Archive for Thursday, May 4, 2006

Big inning dooms Cats

May 4, 2006

De Soto scored two runs in the seventh inning thanks to heads-up base running, aggressive at bats and timely hits.

But the Wildcats lost Monday for the 15th time this season because they could only bring that approach for one inning.

De Soto didn't break up Louisburg pitcher Lindsey Tuter's perfect game until the sixth inning and didn't crack her no-hit bid until the seventh.

Louisburg, meanwhile, broke open the scoreless game with five runs in the fifth.

"We just can't hit the ball," De Soto coach Kelly Dennis said. "We've had some innings where we've played really well, but for us to put seven innings together with pitching fielding and hitting, it's really hard. Here lately we haven't scored."

Perhaps making the loss -- the team's 10th straight -- all the more aggravating is that the defense was pretty solid.

Errors have proven as handicapping of a plague for the Cats this season as ineffective hitting, but starting pitcher Jessica Pennington produced one of her best performances Monday and the infield defense backed her up.

De Soto didn't allow a single run through four innings and Pennington worked out of the only trouble she found herself in, avoiding a run despite three Louisburg players reaching in the first.

Pennington sat potential hitters down in order in the second, third and fourth innings.

"Jess had one of her best games," Dennis said. "I thought she threw great. She was locating fantastic."

But it all came apart in the fifth.

Three of the innings first four hitters reached base and Louisburg's Kelsey Dennis broke a tie game with a single into left field.

One batter later Jessie Kreiser tripled hard into center field. De Soto couldn't make a good play on the ball and Kreiser and all three Louisburg runners scored.

"We played well defensively every inning, even the inning where they got the bases loaded. They had a hard hit ball that we didn't make a play on and they scored a grand slam," Dennis said. "That's frustrating, but we played pretty well with only a couple errors tonight."

De Soto's Meagan Bliss doubled in the seventh for the Wildcats' first hit and Cortney Rupe singled one batter later.

Lindsay Williams then notched the team's only RBI, scoring Bliss with a single. Rupe scored moments later on a wild pitch complimented by a Louisburg error.

"The pitching we faced at the beginning of the year wasn't as dominating," Dennis said. "When you're talking about the hard part of our schedule, you're usually talking about the girl on the mound. We're facing some really good pitchers. This girl was dominating."

De Soto also dropped a pair of games Thursday, falling to Spring Hill 9-2 and 15-0. The Cats host Gardner Thursday in the final home game of the season. The teams will play a single game, which is set to start at 4:30 p.m.

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