In Saturday’s Strike Out Cancer event hosted by Leesville High School, visiting Panther Creek swept the softball and baseball doubleheader against the Pride. The Strike Out Cancer event raised money to benefit the pediatric cancer research center at UNC-Lineberger Cancer Research Center.
The Catamounts’ softball team won 15-5 and the baseball team won 8-4.
Catamounts crush Pride
The softball game between the Catamounts and the Pride was called after five innings following the 10-run mercy rule. Panther Creek broke open what had been just a two-run game after scoring eight runs in the top of the fifth inning.
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Leesville had an opportunity to keep the game going but went quietly in their half of the fifth, as Cassidy Somers struck out the side in order.
Jordyn Kohl had an RBI double in the top of the fifth to get the rout started. Following a groundout by Sarah Aukamp, the next seven Pride batters reached base by way of four singles, two walks and an error.
“We knew we had the lead, and two runs wasn’t enough for a lead. We got Cassidy on the mound, and Caroline Zuber threw a great first three innings,” said Catamounts coach Bryan Cromer. “We knew pitching was going to keep us in the game, and it was just a matter of time before our bats really came alive.”
Panther Creek wasted little time getting runs as the Pride sent eight batters to the plate in the first inning. Four straight hits from Zuber, Rachel Johnson, Hannah Rosenberger, and Alayna McNally gave the Catamounts a quick 3-0 lead before an RBI groundout by Stephanie Plante tacked on one more run.
“They came out ready to swing and be aggressive at the plate,” said Cromer.
The Pride, trailing three entering the third, rallied to take a 5-4 lead. After two errors by Panther Creek, Sarah Barnes doubled home Cece Marks and Anna Marshall. Two batters later, Erin Darnell and Sidney Green had back-to-back singles to give Leesville Road the one-run advantage.
PC baseball rallies
The Catamounts baseball team scored five runs in the last two innings to double up the Pride by a score of 8-4.
Trailing 4-3 in the sixth inning, Ben LaSpaluto had his second hit of the game for the Catamounts with a two-out, two-run single.
With the bases loaded in the seventh, Zach Clover was hit by a pitch. Andrew Zuber followed with an RBI single, and LaSpaluto hit a sacrifice fly to provide Clover enough run support to finish the game.
“We left a lot of runners on base,” said Catamounts coach Dan Hall. “Our guys persevered through it. The opportunity presented itself later in the game and we capitalized.”
Leesville had a chance to put up a big number in the bottom of the first inning. The first five hitters for the Pride reached base but only two of them scored. Some sloppy base running ended Leesville’s chances early after a runner was caught trying to steal third, and another was picked off at second base.