Friday, April 21, 2017

SPORTS STORY >> Beebe girls sweep out Devil Dogs

Leader sports editor

The Beebe softball team has won five games in a row after picking up three wins in two days this week. On Tuesday, the Lady Badgers swept a doubleheader 7-0 and 6-0 against Morrilton. On Wednesday, they beat Pangburn 5-2 in a nonconference matchup at home.

In Tuesday’s 5A/6A District 2 twin bill, Abby Burch threw two complete-game shutouts, giving up just four combined hits over 14 innings. She threw a one-hitter in the opening game, striking out four and walking zero.

After a scoreless first inning in which Beebe failed to capitalize on having the bases loaded with no outs, the Lady Badgers got things rolling in the bottom of the second.

With one out, Lexi Devore drew a walk before a pitch hit Paige Sharp. The runners moved up a base on a passed ball, and both scored on a double to left field by nine-hole hitter Molly Poe.

Back at the top of the lineup, Katlyn Gordon doubled to right to drive in Poe. Gordon then scored on a double by Hannah Gammill with two outs to make the score 4-0.

Beebe added a run in the fourth. Poe and Gordon hit back-to-back singles with one out. Poe scored on Gordon’s hit because of an error in right field.

Beebe (14-10, 6-4) loaded the bases without a hit in the bottom of the sixth on a walk, a HBP and a single by Howell. Poe and Gordon scored again, both on errors by the Morrilton catcher that set the final margin.

Beebe only had six hits, but four went for extra bases. There were two hits each by Poe and Gordon, and one double apiece by Gammill and Howell.

The long ball led Beebe to the win in game two. Gammill, Howell and Lexy Lockhart all hit home runs.

Gammill hit a line-drive, three-run home run in the third inning. In the fifth, Howell hit a solo home run to left field with one out. Two batters later with two outs, Lockhart drove one out to the same area for a 5-0 Beebe lead.

Beebe’s last run came with the help of some small ball. Caelyn Longing hit a leadoff double before Poe laid down a bunt single. Longing was thrown out trying to steal home, but Poe scored on a base hit by Howell to set the final margin.

Howell went 2 for 3 with two RBIs, and was the only Lady Badger with multiple hits.

Morrilton dropped to 11-16 overall and 1-11 in league play.

On Wednesday, Gordon got in on the home run fun with a solo shot against Pangburn.

The fifth inning was the only scoreless one of the game. Beebe scored two in the first and one each in the second, third and fourth innings. Pangburn (18-9, 8-2) scored its two runs in the sixth and seventh.

Gordon’s home run came after falling into a 0-2 hole. She fought off two pitches with foul balls before taking ball one. She sent the sixth pitch of the at-bat over the center field fence for a 1-0 lead.

Gammill doubled that same inning, and later scored on a sac fly by Shanie Young to make it 2-0.

Sharp drew a leadoff walk in the second inning, and scored on a two-out double by Howell.

The third-inning run came on back-to-back, two-out base hits by Ashlynn Hanna and Sharp.

In the fourth inning, Beebe had Gordon and Howell on the corners after a single and an error. Gordon scored on a double-steal attempt. Howell was thrown out at second, but the throw back to the plate wasn’t in time to get Gordon, leaving the score 5-0.

Pangburn’s first run came after a leadoff single and a two-out error. Another two-out error with two runners on base accounted for the Lady Tigers’ final run.

Burch threw the first two and last two innings. She gave up five hits and two runs, but neither were earned. She struck out two and walked zero.

Faith Rose pitched the third, fourth and fifth innings. She gave up one hit with two strikeouts and no walks.