Faith Hill pitches

Faith Hill kicks up dust pitching last Thursday.

LOUISIANA – Louisiana’s first victory of this softball season was a commanding one: a walloping shut-out of the Wellsville-Middletown Tigers.

Thursday’s home game ended 14-0 Louisiana.

“I think a huge key to us winning that game was confidence not only in ourselves, but in our teammates. The girls all came together to do a job — win — and got it accomplished,” head coach Kelsea Dorsey said.

“Each and every girl saw some sort of action and it was great to see how we all cheered each other on for the successes of individuals,” Dorsey added.

The team had a strong start, The Tigers first mistake was walking Faith Rule. Between strike one and strike three of the next at-bat, Rule stole second and then third and home in one go, giving Louisiana their first run.

Aggressive base-running was a trademark of Louisiana’s play: Mechia Campbell also stole home, and Riley Anderson took second before scoring on a ground ball from Gretchen Capps, giving Louisiana its 3-0 lead coming out of the first.

The third inning proved even more profitable for Louisiana: the team scored eigth points, driven by the teams hitting  and base-running — and by a breakdown on the pitching mound for Wellsville. Five Louisiana hitters were hit by pitches over the course of the inning. Louisiana racked up eight more runs in the  inning.

Louisiana scored three more runs in the fourth, gving the game its final score.The mercy rule ended the game in the fifth inning.

Faith Rule, pitching for Louisiana, struck out 10 of the 16 batters she faced and allowed one hit.

The Bulldogs returned home Thursday on the heels of a close loss to Wright City Tuesday. That away game ended 4-3.

The crucial action in the game took place in the early innings. Faith Rule, who took base on the strength of a ground ball, stole second and reached third on a bunt from Mechia Campbell scored the games first run on a line drive by Caitlyn Gloe.

In the bottom of the first, Wright City evened the score, driving in two on a fly ball to right field.

Louisiana scored twice more in the top of the second: Morgan Street crossed the plate off a fly ball to central field from Faith Rule and Emma Inglis stole home.

Wright City made up the crucial margin in the third inning, adding two runs. From there both team’s bats cooled down. Pitching from Faith Rule and her Wellsville-Middletown counterpart  and fielding by both teams kept the Bulldogs and the Tigers to three or four at-bats through the end of the game.

Dorsey thinks the tight result Tuesday fed into the team’s performance two days later.

“We had a tough loss against a very good Wright City team a day before and I think the energy, competitiveness and focus we had from that game that came over into the Wellsville game. We have all the pieces needed to be a successful team and we finally put all the pieces together, which is why we won,” Dorsey said.

Send questions and comments to athorp@pikecountynews.com.

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