LIVINGSTON - - Doyle softball coach Amanda Decell summed up her team’s game against Springfield fairly succinctly.
“Softball’s all about momentum, and we get a few balls finding holes, and that builds our confidence, builds our momentum,” Decell said after the Lady Tigers pounded out 15 hits, scoring 11 runs in the final two innings, in a 15-0 win over the Lady Bulldogs in four innings Wednesday at Johnny Sartwell Park. “When we’re hitting with confidence, we’re hard to beat.”
For Springfield coach Ashley Ledet, it’s still about some of the little things in the game.
“Kudos to them,” Springfield coach Ashley Ledet said after her team dropped to 11-11 and 4-5 in District 10-2A play. “They’re sitting (No.) 2 in the state right now. We have to expect them to hit the ball. It’s the little things that we can still improve on. When they do get base hits, not letting those turn into doubles. Trying to make the play at four (home) with a base hit with a runner and two (second). Field the balls a little more cleanly and quickly in the outfield. You’ve got to put the ball in play more offensively to give yourselves a chance.”
Doyle pitcher Chloe Welda was the other part of the equation, throwing a two-hitter to get the win.
The Lady Tigers’ Addison Contorno set the tone for the game, hitting a solo home run to left field to lead off the bottom of the first inning. It was her third leadoff home run of the season.
“It’s really good because then it flows through the batting lineup, so it gets everybody hyped, and then we start hitting the ball like we did,” Contorno said after finishing 4-for-4 with three runs and three RBIs.
KK Savant walked, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on Marley Olivier’s single to make the score 2-0.
Springfield missed its best chance to score in the top of the second inning after Maddie Ridgedell walked with one out, and Kadie McCabe singled to right and moved to second on the throw.
Chloe Romano dropped a bunt in front of Doyle catcher Madison Diaville, and the inning ended with McCabe getting caught in a rundown between second and third and Romano getting caught between first and second.
“Chloe Romano laid down a beautiful bunt,” Ledet said. “They came after our girl at third. We get an obstruction call on the catcher. After that, they chase our runner that was at second, and then our runner at third then advances to home. In the meantime of her advancing, they make the second out between second out between second and third, and then they also get out Romano between first and second. The run should have counted. It was a missed call, but that call doesn’t change the outcome of this game.”
“I gave a lot of credit to our outfielders because if you didn’t realize, we had one outfielder catching the ball at second,” Decell said. “She made the first out of that play, and then the second out was our right fielder who came in. I give a lot of credit to our outfielders for being alert and being aware of what was going on and coming in and helping us out. It was a very strange play.”
Doyle added to the led in the bottom of the second as Shelby Taylor got a two-out single, Contorno walked and KK Savant singled to score a run. Another run scored on the same play when the ball was misplayed in the outfield for a 4-0 lead.
Welda gave up a two-out single to Crissy Edwards in the top of the third but struck out Olivia Wall to end the inning.
From there, Doyle broke the game open with six runs in the bottom of the inning.
Elise Jones walked, Olivier singled and Lambert walked with one out to load the bases. Jones scored on a passed ball, and Welda singled up the middle to make the score 6-0.
One out later, Contorno had a two-run single, pushing the lead to 8-0.
“I saw that she (SHS starting pitcher Ridgedell) was throwing me all out, so I knew I that I had to take it that way and just have confidence in myself and get those runs in,” Contorno said.
Savant followed with a double to center field for a 9-0 lead, and Diaville singled to right off Springfield reliever ReNay Edwards to make the score 10-0.
After the Lady Bulldogs were retired in order in the top of the fourth, the Lady Tigers put the game away in the bottom of the inning with Olivier, Kassidy Rivero, Rylee Lambert and Welda getting consecutive singles to make the score 12-0.
After Lambert was thrown out in a rundown, Shelby Taylor, Contorno and Savant had singles, with the game’s final run scoring on an error in the outfield.
Welda struck out four and walked one in four innings while going 2-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs, but maybe the biggest plus for her was working with a big lead.
“It helps calm my nerves.” Welda said. “If they get a hit, I’m not as worried because we have runs … so it helps me feel less nervous pitching.”
Olivier was 3-for-3 with a run and an RBI, Savant went 2-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs, and Taylor was 2-for-3 with two runs to lead Doyle.
Ridgedell gave up eight hits, 10 runs and four walks in 2.2 innings, while ReNay Edwards gave up seven hits and five runs in 2/3 of an inning of relief.