Playing softball right after a school trip to Dollywood wasn’t a successful formula for the Pineville Lady Lions on Friday. Pineville committed 10 errors and left 15 runners on base in a 14-3 loss to Barbourville.
“For two weeks, we’ve been in a hitting slump. It’s like we get the bases loaded and we cannot get that connection,” Lady Lions coach Shari Knuckles said. “The girls are coming out and they’re competing hard. They’re dedicated, but right now we’re just not jelling. We’re hitting the ball, but we’re hitting it right at people.”
The Lady Tigers got two hits apiece from Brandi Hembree, Amber Mills, Rebecca Bolinger and Hannah Corey while Corey and Taylor Logan scored three runs each in the win. Logan overcame some wildness to earn the victory in the pitcher’s circle. She gave up just three unearned runs on five hits while striking out seven, walking seven and hitting two batters.
Pineville pitcher Rebecca Lee-Theis didn’t get a lot of help from her defense as just three of the runs she allowed were earned. Over seven innings she surrendered 11 hits while striking out five, walking four and hitting a batter.
Kelsey Goodin had two singles, walked and reached on an error to lead the Lady Lion offense. Erica Gambrell singled, walked twice and scored a run; Lizzie Lee-Theis singled and scored a run; Rebecca Lee-Theis singled and twice reached on errors while Brandy Sanders reached on an error and scored the other Pineville run.
Barbourville got two runs in the top of the first inning as Logan was hit by a pitch to start the game and Corey singled with one out. With two down, Hembree hit a fly ball to center that went for an error as both runners scored.
The Lady Tigers got RBI singles from Bolinger, Corey and Mills in the fourth inning as they stretched the lead to 6-0.
Pineville answered with two runs in the bottom of the frame. Goodin, Kameron Jackson and Gambrell all walked to load the bases with no out. Goodin and Jackson were both retired at home on fielder’s choice grounders by Lizzie Lee-Theis and Ali Knuckles, then Rebecca Lee-Theis sent a drive to center that went for an error as two runs scored.
In the fifth Brandy Sanders reached on an error, Goodin singled and Jackson was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Gambrell walked to force in a run and it was 6-3.
That was as close as the Lady Lions would get, however. Three straight errors after two were out in the top of the sixth paved the way for three more Barbourville runs to score. Bobbi Jo Rudd also had an RBI single in the inning.
Pineville made five errors in the seventh, Mills and Hembree added run scoring hits and the Lady Tiger lead ballooned to 14-3.
Both teams will be back in action on Monday with Pineville (5-11, 1-4 district) hosting Middlesboro and Barbourville (5-15, 4-1) visiting Clay County.
— — —
Barbourville…200 403 5 — 14 11 6
Pineville………000 210 0 — 3 5 10
Logan and Mills; RLee-Theis and BroSanders. W-Logan. L-RLee-Theis.