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HEBRON ESTATES - Big games during the first week of the regular season seldom turn out as expected and even more so end up not having any bearing on what can happen when the post-season rolls around ten weeks later.
That will hopefully be the case for the North Bullitt Lady Eagles as they opened the 2010 season with a 7-2 loss to Butler. A year ago, the two teams played a 1-0 game that Butler won in the semi-finals of the Sixth Region Tournament.
This game was close through three innings with the Bearettes up 1-0. In the bottom of the fourth, the Lady Eagles’ defense made some mistakes as Butler scored six runs. North Bullitt didn’t score until posting two runs in the top of the sixth.
“We played OK,” North Bullitt head coach Eric Lambert said later. “I don’t know if we were completely ready to play. We made some errors that came back to get us. When we gave up the six runs they scored five of those with two outs and nobody on base.”
The final linescore showed four North Bullitt errors.
“It was four errors, but it seemed like a lot more,” Lambert said. “The scorekeepers were generous.”
Erin Cox was the starting pitcher for the Lady Eagles and she went the distance. Butler collected eight hits, all singles.
North Bullitt finished with three hits including a double by senior Leah Cherry.
“We came out as a team hitting the ball,” Lambert said. “The Butler pitcher and coach used our aggressiveness against us. They didn’t put the ball in the zone and we had trouble being patient and laying off of those pitches.”
It was the first game of the season for both teams.
North Bullitt picked up win number on later in the week as they crushed Bardstown 19-4 in a game that was stopped after just four innings.
The only bad news for the Lady Eagles was that senior pitcher Sheridan Hamilton, who started this game, went out midway through the game when she dove for a batted ball and had her pitching had stepped on by a teammate. She could be out for one to two weeks, but with spring break coming up could miss only two games.
Cox came in to pitch in place of Hamilton for the rest of the Bardstown game.
The heart of the North Bullitt line-up crushed the ball in this game. Cherry smashed two home runs and catcher Breanna Kuffner went three-for-three while driving in six runs.
This dominating win was good for the younger players to gain some confidence.
“It was tough on the younger kids starting off with Butler,” Lambert pointed out. “Just getting some games under their belts should help. We’re still working on our rotation in the middle infield. This was a chance for them to get more confidence with what they are doing out there.”
North Bullitt played at home against Moore on Tuesday and will be on the road on Thursday to battle Male.