Wakefield junior pitcher Sara Harmon allowed two runs and struck out six batters to lead the Wolverines to an 8-2 win over Northern Tuesday in the first round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A softball playoffs.
Wakefield (14-7) scored a run in the first inning and never looked back, as its defense kept pace with the offense.
“I was happy with their patience hitting the ball,” Wakefield coach Danny Inscoe said of the Wolverines. “Once they got on base, they were smart in their base running.”
Wakefield opened its lead to 3-0 in the fourth inning when Amanda Dacunto singled and then was sent home by Harmon. As Harmon was stealing second, teammate Alyssa Lasurdo’s single turned into a double on a throwing error that also helped Harmon cross home.
The Wolverines took a commanding 6-0 lead in the fifth off two throwing errors by the Knights and a two-run double by Dacunto.
But Northern (10-11) didn’t give up the fight.
With two outs and a man on base from a walk, senior Libby Cheek nailed a two-run home run that just cleared center field.
“I tried to throw her a pitch outside but it dropped a little,” Harmon said.
The Knights’ brief rally in the sixth was cut short when Paige Williamson over slid second base on a double and was called out. Harmon got Northern in a 3-and-out in the final seventh inning.
“They are a good hitting team and didn’t give up,” she said. “But we did what we needed to do win and advance.”
Wakefield is scheduled to play Saturday in the NCHSAA second round against the winner between Heritage and Millbrook.