Lutes silences Lady Cougars in key 6-0 win

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By Mike Farner

SHEPHERDSVILLE - It is doubtful that anyone outside of Shepherdsville knows the Bullitt Central softball program better than Bullitt East’s Jamie Lutes.

The sophomore pitcher used that knowledge to her best advantage on Thursday, hurling a three-hitter as she and her Charger teammates rolled to an important 6-0 district victory on the new field at Bullitt Central.

Lutes, whose older sister played at Bullitt Central, played this past summer on a traveling team that had its foundation in the Lady Cougar program. The player and her father, as a coach, were both part of that team.

The loss was the second in three days to their county rivals, but Bullitt Central head coach Buddy Gallemore said he was more frustrated with the loss to Bullitt East than he was in the eight-inning, 6-5 setback to North Bullitt earlier in the week.

Bullitt Central just could not hit Lutes.

“I give all the credit to Jamie Lutes for that,” Gallemore said. “She pitched a whale of a ball game. We still left nine on base. Even when we hit it, it wasn’t solid.”

Lutes pitched a complete game and the defense did make three errors behind her. The sophomore finished with six strikeouts and two walks.

Bullitt East scored twice in the top of the second before adding solo runs in the third and fifth innings. The Lady Chargers put the icing on the cake with a pair of runs in the sixth frame.

“That was a bit win for us,” first-year Bullitt East head coach Ricky Hoffman said later. “We needed that first district win. I’ve known Buddy for 20 years (they both attended Cumberland College). I knew they would be up for us. We had to earn those six runs.

“That was probably Jamie’s best pitching game of the year,” the coach added. “She played She knows quie a few of those girls.”

Bullitt Central sophomore pitcher Seaera Minyard took the loss despite a strong outing.

Bullitt East opened the scoring in the second inning Kirsten Price walked and then Jenna Simms doubled. The two runners scored when senior Erin Manns singled.

The next two runs were generated by sophomore Taylor Price. In the third inning she tripled and then scored on a sacrifice fly by Rachel Simms. Price then did the same thing in the fifth inning, hitting a triple to the gap in right center. She then scored on a passed ball. Taylor Price finished with three hits in the win.

Bullitt East capped the offense with a pair of runs in the sixth inning. Brooke Hammons singled and she came around to score on Kaylee McClure’s single. After the second out of the inning, Taylor Price singled home McClure.

Bullitt Central’s score book showed four hits for the Lady Cougars and only two errors for Bullitt East, but it didn’t matter. Lady Cougar lead-off hitter Sarah Spurling had two of those hits which were all singles.

BE Continues Strong

Before beating Bullitt Central on Thursday, the Lady Chargers rolled past South Oldham 11-2 on Tuesday.

Lutes picked up the win with seven innings of work. She allowed five hits with four strike-outs and five walks.

Bullitt East collected 18 hits including home runs by Rachel Simms and Jenna Simms. Hammons had a pair of doubles while LaVella Hall added a double. Rachel Simms finished with four hits which included two doubles in addition to the home run. Jenna Simms collected three hits while Hall, Kirsten Price, Manns and Lutes each had two hits.

After beating Bullitt Central on Thursday, Bullitt East headed to Corbin to take part in the Cumberland Falls Invitational.

Pool play started on Friday night with an 8-0 victory over Rowan County as Lutes worked a complete game with only two hits and seven strike-outs.

Taylor Price continued her strong hitting with an inside the park home run while Kirsten Price added a trouble. Doubles were hit by Jenna Simms, Manns and McClure. Both Lutes and Jenna Simms had two hits.

Bullitt East’s next game showed their one weakness so far this season - Saturday contests. The Chargers are 12-4 this season with all four losses coming on Saturday.

The first loss in the tournament came on Saturday morning by a 7-4 count to Bowling Green.

“That was a Saturday morning game we didn’t get up for,” Hoffman noted.

Lutes pitched five innings before the game was called for the time limit. Bullitt East made three errors behind her and too many times tried to make the hard out instead of settling for the easy play.

The offense for the Lady Chargers finished with five hits including a double by Hall. Both Hall and Kirsten Price had two hits.

That moved Bullitt East into the elimination bracket where they faced Corbin. That was an offensive slugfest for four innings before the red and gold won 17-9.

Bullitt East collected 15 hits in the win including three hits from Rachel Simms including a triple and a double. Jenna Simms belted a home run. Two hits each were collected by hall, Kirsten Price, Simms and Lutes.

That set up a rematch with Bowling Green and this time it was a better game from Bullitt East but they still came up short in the final 3-2 decision.

Bowling Green led 3-0 after three innings before Bullitt East scored solo runs in the fifth and seventh innings. Bullitt East had runners on second and third in both the fifth and sixth innings, but could get just the one run.

In the seventh, Manns doubled and later scored on a single by Lutes. The lady Chargers loaded the bases, but the game ended on a ground-out to the shortstop.

Lutes allowed just four hits, but one of those hits was a home run that accounted for the first two runs.

Bullitt East collected seven hits including two by Lutes.

“It ended up being a good tournament for us,” Hoffman said. “it was a good week overall and we learned a lot about our team.”