LOUISIANA – The prospects for Louisiana’s softball season looks significantly sunnier than it did just two weeks ago.
The Bulldogs had gone 0-7 from the start of the season until their Sept. 19 walloping of Wright City.
On the heels of that win, Louisiana registered victories up and down Hwy. 79 week, beating Clopton and Elsberry.
“We as a team are tired of the complacency and the leaders have stepped up in a big way to throw mediocrity out the door,” Head Coach Kelsea Dorsey said. “We have the never satisfied, hungry, dogs-gotta-eat mentality that has been shown the last few games we have played. If we keep doing the big things like we have been, big things will happen.
Louisiana was scheduled for an intra-county game against Clopton Tuesday, Sept. 24.
Clopton secured a narrow lead in the bottom of the first on the strength of a home run to center field — and then held onto it through a five inning drought.
In the sixth, however, things broke for Louisiana in a big way. On the strength of three walks, two single, two doubles and a triple seven Louisiana runners reached home, leaving the game 7-1. Each team added another run in their remaining at-bats.
Faith Rule, pitching for Louisiana, struck out ten.
“Faith Rule has stepped up her pitching tremendously,” Dorsey wrote in relation to last week’s games. “She is giving us every chance out there to win — giving her teammates easy routine plays or taking them herself with the strikeout.”
Dorsey also pointed to the hitting by catcher Tatum DePriest, especially a hard ground ball triple on two outs in the sixth that drove in three runners.
“Tatum has stepped up big in her hitting,” Dorsey said. “[She] has gained a tremendous amount of confidence and is showing it at
Dorsey also highlighted the performance of third baseman Mechia Campbell and Jaidyn Wommack at the plate and in the field.
Louisiana overcame an even more substantial disadvantage in the closing innings of Thursday’s game against Elsberry.
Louisiana came into the bottom of the fifth trailing 5-1 — a gap that would shrink and then disappear over the course of their time at the plate. Louisiana registered 9 runs and came out of the inning leading 10-5, the games final margin.
In last week’s games, Dorsey said the team had succeeded in limiting errors in the field that cost it runs in previous games, while learning to put its runners in position and move them across the plate.
A home game Monday night broke Louisiana’s nascent streak — and struck a sour note, given the team’s apparent momentum. The Monroe City Panthers shut out Louisiana, winning 11-0. Monroe City pitcher Kailynn Fuemmeler pitched a perfect game, which ended in the bottom of the sixth.
At the plate and around the bases, Monroe City did the most damage in the fourth, notching four runs.
This week, Louisiana, with its 3-8 record, is set to play away games against 7-9 North Callaway Tuesday and 6-4 Montgomery County Thursday.
“We have a very important week ahead of us,” Dorsey said. “Two conference games that will make a huge impact on district seeding. I think we are starting to have confidence not only in ourselves, but in our teammates, which is huge.”