On a cold night for softball, things were just heating up between Wake Forest and Rolesville.
The Cougars and Rams were deadlocked at 3-3 after six complete innings of play, setting up what looked to be an exciting seventh inning battle non March 3. But the two teams were battling more than each other.
Since there are no lights on the Rolesville High School field, the teams were battling a race against time. As the evening went on, visibility was becoming an issue, so the umpires decided to postpone the game at the conclusion of the sixth inning with the game tied at three.
When the game continued in Wake Forest Thursday, the teams split the games. Rolesville finished what it started with a 4-3 win in the first game but dropped the next one, 4-2. .
“An ideal stopping point for us,” Cougars coach Brittany Owens said after the postponed game.
Her team held a 3-0 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth. It was there that the host Rams finally got going, tying the game after consecutive home runs from home runs from Summer Howerton and Azaria Isbell and an RBI single from Mikayla Boone.
“It sucks because my girls were just getting after it,” Rams coach Jennifer Cummings said. “My girls will pick back up, nothing we can do about it.”
Wake Forest built its 3-0 lead by getting runs in the top of the fourth, fifth and sixth inning. The Cougars drove in two runs, and scored the final on a passed ball. Rolesville, however, finally saw enough of Cunningham’s pitches to get a read on her, taking full advantage in the sixth inning, picking up four hits, after just getting three in the first five innings combined.
After a perfect stopping point - top of the seventh, game tied - the umpires gathered the coaches and decided to continue the game next week, picking up where they left off.
In the bottom of the sixth inning things got interesting. Rolesville’s first batter, Madison Taylor, was thrown out. Howerton and Isbell came behind Taylor and belted hits over the outfield fence, giving life to the Rams.
“I think just seeing one pitcher for that long, eventually you find it,” Owens said. “They (Rolesville) found it two times in a row.”
Three to know
Chelsey Cunningham, Wake Forest: Picked all six innings for the Cougars, striking out eight batters.
Summer Howerton, Rolesville: Her first hit of the day was a deep shot over the left field fence, putting the Rams on the board for the first time.
Jessica Barbour, Wake Forest: Barbour had two hits and drove in a run for the Cougars in the fifth inning to make it 2-0.
By the numbers
11 Total number of strikeouts in the contest.
13 Combined number of hits in the game.
3 Number of runners left of base in the top of the fourth by Wake Forest after taking a 1-0 lead.