SHEPHERDSVILLE - The North Bullitt Lady Eagles scored four times in the top of the seventh inning, but it wasn’t enough on Thursday as Bullitt Central pulled out a hard-earned 6-4 victory in a key district clash.
This was the fourth time the game had been scheduled and rescheduled because of bad weather and it took some on-field magic from Bullitt Central to get the game played.
The Lady Cougars scored three times in the second and added another in the third and seemed to be completely in control when they scored two more times in the fifth frame to take a 6-0 advantage. North Bullitt, which had only four hits through the first six innings, suddenly came alive at the plate in the last inning.
Bullitt Central pitcher Seaera Minyard hit Megan Allen to start then inning and then Carly Benz doubled. After an out, number nine hitter Devan Benz singled to plate the first run. At the top of the line-up, Breanna Sherrard was hit by a pitch to load the bases. The Lady Cougars then got the second out when Jordan Vorbrink hit into a fielder’s choice with the out made at the plate.
That brought Caitlin Crowder to the plate and the sophomore blasted a shot to centerfield that hit the fence on one hop. Three runners scored on the play with Crowder reaching second. Minyard then got a ground-out to end the game.
“It goes to show that you need to play seven innings,” Bullitt Central head coach Buddy Gallemore said. “Nobody is going to roll over in this district. You have to get 21 outs. North Bullitt did everything they could and I will tell you I as nervous in the dugout.”
Bullitt Central finished with nine hits in the game off two North Bullitt pitchers. Freshman Hailey Szpila scored two of the runs and had a double and a single. Dana Johnson also had a double. Minyard collected two hits.
The controversy in the game came in the fifth inning when it appeared that North Bullitt scored twice on a Bullitt Central throwing error. Tori Andres had doubled to start the inning and then went to third on a passed ball. With one out, Sherrard then topped the ball in front of home plate and on the throw to first, the ball sailed all the way to the right field fence, allowing both runs to score.
That brought Gallemore out of the dugout and quickly the umpires got together and decided that Sherrard had run inside the base line. She was then called out and the runner sent back to third. The threat then ended with a pop-up.
While neither head coach could say for sure that the call was right or wrong, they both agreed that the call should have been made when it happened, not after the runners had both scored.
“He should have called it right then and there,” Gallemore said. “I don’t blame the North Bullitt coaches for being disappointed in the call.”
“It’s obviously a game of momentum,” North Bullitt head coach Eric Lambert said later. “I thought that could be our inning. I thought some of our girls had a tough time recovering. It was a tough break. It should have been dead at the beginning.”
Bullitt Central did squeeze in a game earlier in the week as they traveled to Ballard to take on the state’s second-ranked team. Ballard survived a tough 3-0 game.
Minyard pitched a complete game, allowing six hits, but she did walk seven.
Bullitt Central had only one hit, a single by Rachel Basil in the sixth inning.
North Bullitt played over the weekend in a round-robin event at Martha Layne Collins High School in Shelbyville.
In the first game of the event on Friday, the Lady Eagles appeared to be hung over from the Bullitt Central game as they gave up six runs in the first two innings in a game that they eventually lost 7-2.
“The last five innings it was a 2-1 game,” Lambert said. “The game is seven inning and we have had a tough time putting seven innings together.”
In both this game and the Bullitt Central contest, Lambert used both freshman Elise Mills and eighth-grader Shelby Crenshaw in the circle.
On Saturday, the Lady Eagles picked up win number four on the season with a 13-5 victory over Covington Holmes behind the pitching of Mills. North Bullitt scored in six different innings including four runs in the seventh.