HEBRON ESTATES - North Bullitt softball coach Eric Lambert never used the word ‘revenge’ last Thursday before his team took the field against Bullitt East, a team that had beaten the Lady Eagles 5-4 earlier in the season.
Of course, that’s not to say that some of his players weren’t thinking revenge.
Whatever the word was that North Bullitt was thinking, it worked to perfection as the green and gold picked up an 8-1 victory.
This game was almost the complete opposite of the first meeting. In that game, North Bullitt had made two errors in the first inning that led to early Bullitt East runs. This time, it was Bullitt East that had two errors in the bottom of the first frame that led to four runs. The outcome was over from that point.
“I did not use that language, but the girls might do that,” Lambert said later. “We felt the first time that we put too much emphasis into one game. We wanted to treat this game like any other game. We didn’t do anything special.”
After North Bullitt senior pitcher Cierra Hayes had retired Bullitt East in order to start the game, the Lady Eagles scored four times in the bottom of the first with only two hits.
Hayes opened the inning with a fly ball to centerfield, but it was dropped. Erin Cox followed that with a single that put runners on the corner and then Cox moved up when she took second uncontested. After one out, Breanne Kuffner walked to load the bases. Leah Cherry followed that with a single to plate the first run.
Freshman Darien Davenport then hit the ball to the shortstop, but the throw home was high and two runs scored. Sheridan Hamilton followed with a sacrifice that allowed Cherry to score.
That was all the offense for the Lady Eagles until the bottom of the sixth inning.
Bullitt East did score a run in the third frame when Jenna Simms singled and moved up when Erin Manns was hit by a pitch. Kuffner then tried to pick the runner off second and the ball went into the outfield, allowing the run to score.
North Bullitt put the icing on the cake in the sixth inning with four runs after there were two outs. Sheridan Hamilton had a single to start the inning but was later forced out at third. The Lady Eagles followed that with singles by Hayes and Cox to score one runner and another run score when Kayla Middleton doubled. The final two runs scored on Kuffner’s single.
Hayes was the winning pitcher as she allowed just the one hit, Simms’ single. Hayes did hit four batters and the defense made two errors.
Bullitt East senior Ashley Ploetner did all the pitching for the Lady Chargers. She gave up ten hits with eight of those being singles. Kuffner and Cox each had a double for North Bullitt. Cox finished with three hits and Kuffner had two hits.
NB beats Beth Haven
Two days before beating Bullitt East, North Bullitt was down to its final out before rallying to beat Beth Haven 6-2 in eight innings.
Beth Haven had a 1-0 lead going into the seventh when Kuffner doubled and then stole third base. At third, Kuffner and Lambert had talked about the option of stealing home against Beth Haven pitcher Kayla Bobby, but then senior Brandi Finn reached out and popped the first pitch up behind second base. There was miscommunication and the ball dropped, allowing Kuffner to score.
That moved the game into the eighth inning and North Bullitt blew the game open. Senior Heather Jenkins led off the eighth with a single and the Hayes blasted a home run off Bobby, the top pitcher in the Sixth Region. Cox then came to the plate and did the same, hitting a home run.
“That’s the first time I’ve seen back-to-back home runs,” Lambert said.
Hayes was the winning pitcher for North Bullitt.
Bullitt Central Wins One
Last week was a short one for most teams in the area because of bad weather. That was the case for Bullitt Central as Buddy Gallemore’s team took the field just once, beating Holy Cross 10-0.
The game was on the road and Bullitt Central sent 11 batters to the plate in the first inning and scored six times to break the game open. Seaera Minyard had a triple in the first that drove home two of the runs.
Bullitt Central had just five hits in the game and three of those came off the bat of Minyard. She had a triple, double and a single. Whitney Miller and Brandi Tarrance had the other hits.
Minyard, a freshman, also had a big day on the mount, allowing just one hit over five innings of the complete game. She struck out six and did hit one batter. Both the hit and the hit batter came in the fourth inning, but neither runner reached third base.
Gallemore even got on the internet and had set up two additional games with LaRue County later in the week, but things just did not work out.
“At this point the key is getting momentum,” Gallemore said of not getting on the field. “We want to keep the rust off. There is not a lot we can do in the gym. We had one day outside last week and one day in the gym.”