Coming into the playoffs, North Lamar had played 21 games. This included preseason and district games. Most years, this would be the number of games played prior to district. However, because of the weather, this year has been different.
With an offensive explosion in their last game against Pleasant Grove, hopefully the Pantherettes are starting to hit (pun intended) their stride. North Lamar continued their strong offensive outburst Thursday night in game one against Tyler-Chapel Hill in Tyler. North Lamar scored 15 runs on 10 hits en route to their 15-2 victory.
It was a complete team effort. Bailee Nickerson led the team in hits with three. Madison Morrison and Erin Scholl led the team with three RBI each. Perhaps, though, it was the little things that mattered most in the game. Reagan Richardson started both the first and the second innings with a walk. Both times it sparked the North Lamar offense as they put up four runs in each of the first two innings.
The big blow in the first came off the bat of Lauren Hodges. With North Lamar up 2-0 already, Lauren ripped a single into right field which scored Nickerson and Scholl. The second inning wound up much the same but this time it was Scholl providing the two run single. Scholl took a 2-0 pitch and hammered it to center field, scoring Morrison and Nickerson.
With a lead to work with, freshman Richardson went to work in the circle. Reagan plowed through the lineup for North Lamar. It wasn't until the fourth inning that Chapel Hill got a hit. As a matter of fact, they got the only two hits of the ball game during that inning. A single and a home run was all the Lady Bulldogs could manage against Reagan.
Perhaps more impressive than the batting and pitching was the defense behind Reagan. Of the 27 batters faced, 23 of them put the ball in play in some capacity. There was only one error committed by the Pantherette defense on the night. If North Lamar keeps hitting the ball like they have the past two games, they get great starting pitching and their defense plays that good, they could be playing for a while this May.
Game two is tonight at 6:00 p.m. at North Lamar.