PINEVILLE, La. – Trailing 4-0 in game one of a wet doubleheader against Austin College, Phobee Spell tied the game with one swing of the bat, which set off an 11-run inning to start a dominant day by the Louisiana College softball team, as the Lady Wildcats beat the Kangaroos 14-6 and 9-1, with both games lasting only five innings long, Monday afternoon at Wildcat Park.
Game 1 – Austin College 6, Louisiana College 14 (5 innings)
Game one didn’t get off to the best of starts for the Lady Wildcats as a pair of errors allowed the Kangaroos to score a pair of runs in the first inning. That was magnified as Austin added two more runs in the top of the second to take a 4-0 lead, but then the LC bats woke up in a big way in the bottom half of the inning. After two singles and a walk loaded the bases with one out, Phobee Spell turned the game in an instant as she took the first pitch she saw over the right-center wall to make her first collegiate home run a grand slam that tied the game at 4-4.
A base hit and a pair of walks helped load the bases for Desiree Squires, who drove a pitch back up the middle to drive in Briley Johnston and Kaitlyn Moore to give the Wildcats the lead. Kateyn Courville added two more as her double to the left-center gap plated Kayelea Dearmon and Squires for an 8-4 lead. Samantha Cetta then rocketed a pitch down the third base line for an RBI double that scored Courville. Haley Vezinat drove a liner into a perfect spot in left-center that got passed two diving ‘Roo fielders, allowing both herself and Cetta to come all the way around and score for an inside the park home run to cap an 11-run frame by the Lady Wildcats.
With the run-rule in play, the Lady Wildcats added several insurance runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Emily Hardy tripled to center to score Haley Vezinat, Jaylin Poe’s double to center scored Hardy, and Noel Schonhoff’s double to center brought Poe home for a 14-4 advantage. Austin would score twice in the top of the fifth, but it wouldn’t be enough to avoid the run-rule from ending the game after five innings.
Katelyn Courville, Haley Vezinat, and Emily Hardy were all two-for-two at the plate in the game one win. Vezinat hit a double, the inside the park home run for her first homer of the season, drew a walk, and scored all three times she got on base with two RBI. Courville had a double, scored twice, and drove in two. Hardy had a triple, a RBI, and two runs scored. Phobee Spell’s first collegiate home run gave her a game-high four RBI in her lone hit of the contest.
Cameron Crochet (1-2) started the game and threw four innings, allowing four hits and four runs, two earned, struck out four and walked two. Kayelea Dearmon threw two-thirds of an inning and gave up three hits and two runs, both earned. Bailey McMillian came in and induced a grounder for the game’s final out by the only batter she faced in the contest.
Game 2 – Austin College 1, Louisiana College 9 (5 innings)
Much like game one, game two started quickly for the ‘Roos, as Austin College scratched across a run for a 1-0 lead. But this time, LC’s answer came quickly in the form of a two-out RBI double to left field by Shaye Tredinich, which scored Jade Brady all the way from first base for a 1-1 score after one inning of play.
But for the second time in the day, the second inning proved to be the decisive inning for the Lady Wildcats as five LC runs came across in the frame to bust the game open. Jaylin Poe’s base hit through the left side of the infield scored Katelyn Courville from third to give the Lady Wildcats the lead. Briley Johnston poked one through the right side of the infield to score Samantha Cetta from third to make it 3-1. Kaitlyn Moore went right back up the gut for an RBI single that plated Poe. Jade Brady’s ground ball to second did the job to allow Johnston in from third. Shaye Tredinich capped the big inning as she went right back up the middle to score Moore and make it 6-1 LC.
Looking for the mercy rule for the second time in the day, the Lady Wildcats got the score in the right spot by plating three more runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jade Brady buried a pitch in the right corner for a triple that scored Briley Johnston. Brady eventually came home on Kayelea Dearmon’s RBI double down the left field line. Katelyn Courville’s fly ball to center allowed Haley Vezinat to tag up and score just before the inning’s final out was recorded at third base for the 9-1 score. With no answer from Austin College in the top of the fifth, the game was ended.
Briley Johnston continues her hot start to the season at the plate, going three-of-three with an RBI and two runs scored. Jade Brady was two-of-three with a triple, two RBI, and two runs scored. Shaye Tredinich went two-of-two with a double, a walk, and two RBI. Katelyn Courville was also two-of-two with two stolen bases, an RBI, and a run scored.
Jade Brady (1-0) went the distance in the contest, giving up four hits and a run, which was earned, walked one, and struck out two to pick up the complete game victory.
“It’s always good to get back on the right track after a tough loss,” said Louisiana College head coach Barry Roberts. “Our kids came out and both pitched and hit well today. We were also able to get some kids some game reps who haven’t been getting them. Jade Brady has worked her way back from being on the shelf for almost a year and is now getting into pretty good pitching form. 14 different players got hits over the two games today, which shows we did a good job hitting all throughout the line-up. All around, today was a good day, not just because we got two wins, but because we got to see some kids get some reps.”
The Lady Wildcats (3-6, 0-3 ASC) look to ride the momentum built today into this weekend’s conference home-opening series against Concordia. First pitch of Friday’s doubleheader against the Tornados (3-6, 0-3 ASC) is set for 5:00 P.M. at Wildcat Park.
Photo: Darrell Brown/LC Sports Information