Tuesday, April 15, 2014

SPORTS STORY >> Lady Panthers hold mark at Jonesboro

Leader sports editor

The Cabot softball team held on for a 4-3 road win over Jonesboro on Friday in a crucial 7A/6A East Conference matchup.

A scoreless game for four innings suddenly burst open when the Lady Panthers posted four runs in the top of the fifth inning, but all that almost slipped away when Jonesboro responded with three in the bottom of the sixth.

After Jonesboro’s Marcie Bewley was hit by a pitch to start the sixth inning, Madi Bishop cut the lead in half on the first pitch of her at-bat when she put it over the fence in right-center field. Susannah Kelly followed that with a double, and scored two batters later on a single by Taylor Rainey.

Cabot pitcher Lauren McCluskey got a groundout to shortstop and struck out the next two batters faced to get out of the jam.

McCluskey then struck out the first and third batter of the seventh inning, and got a groundout inbetween to hold on for the victory.

Cabot was at the top of the order when it broke through for four runs in the fifth. Leadoff hitter Rachel Allgood got things rolling with a single and Erin Eckert walked. The next two batters went down in order, but an error at shortstop kept the Lady Panthers alive.

Molly Wood hit a hard grounder to short. The error allowed Allgood to score and left two runners on base for Macee Abbott.

She sent a 1-0 pitch over the fence in left-center field to clear the bases and give Cabot just enough runs to maintain the lead and victory.

Cabot got just six hits, but walked five times and had several opportunities to score throughout the game. Allgood and Abbott led the way, each going 2 for 4 at the plate. Heather Hill and Hannah Montgomery got the other two hits for the Lady Panthers.

McCluskey went the distance on the mound for Cabot. She gave up five hits, three in the sixth inning, while walking just one and striking out six.

The Lady Panthers, 8-6, 6-0, played Little Rock Central at home on Tuesday, and added a home nonconference game against Wynne on Thursday. Look for details of those games in Saturday’s edition of The Leader.