By Zach Gregory Staff Writer
May 2, 2014
BELLBROOK — It didn’t look like a good start for Bellbrook in their matchup against Southwestern Buckeye League foe Carlisle on a chilly Thursday night at Bellbrook High School. The Lady Eagles started slow, but a couple of big innings gave them the edge and they ended the day with a 15-10 win.
It started to look ugly for Bellbrook (6-9, 5-4 SWBL) in the second inning. Sophmore Nicole Licher was on the mound for the Golden Eagles and they were struggling to get out of the inning. Bellbrook coach Jeff Eckley could be heard urging his girls to pick it up in the field. The Carlisle Indians (6-12, 3-9 SWBL) scored five runs in the inning, capitalized by a double from Shelby Creech that brought in Riley Poole and Annie Campbell.
In the bottom of the second inning, senior Haleigh Perry hit a solo homer to the left, but that was it for Bellbrook in the inning. Then Carlisle senior Morgan Glover hit a home run of her own off Perry, who had taken over for Licher.
Then Bellbrook turned it on in the bottom of the third. They were able to laser in on the ball and stayed hot for the rest of the game. Five different batters (Emily Smith, Madison Pittman, Vica Apanasewicz, Perry and Haylie Gazda) all drove in runs in the inning to tie the game at six. In the third and fourth innings alone, Bellbrook had a combined 10 hits and 12 runs.
Eckley talked about his team’s ability to get hot after starting so cold.
“As always, we get off to a slow start. Then we finally decided to wake up in the fourth inning and it was hit after hit after hit. We were right in the meat of our lineup and we did a great job of putting the ball in play, hitting it hard and then making things happen,” he said. “We have a tendency to start slow. We come out and we’re focused and we work hard, and then the game hits and we’re slow.”
Bellbrook ran through the entire lineup in the fourth inning. Pittman and Kara Eckley both got two RBIs, Smith, Perry and Gazda each added another as well. Perry finished the game 3-for-4 with a homer, a double, single and three RBIs along with three runs scored. Smith also finished 3-for-4 with three singles, two RBIs and three runs scored.
Perry did a good job from the mound after taking over in the second inning. She gave up five hits and three earned runs in the fifth inning, but only allowed three hits and a run after that.
The Lady Eagles return to action at 5 p.m. tonight, when they face Monroe at home on Senior Night. Seniors include Ali Bowers, Kara Eckley, Madison Pittman, Haleigh Perry and Emily Smith. According to Eckley, Smith has tied the school record for home runs for the season. According to the league website, Smith has six home runs thus far this season.