From The Diamond | April 3, 2014

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By Kristin Beck

Gallatin downs Carroll, 4-2

Gallatin County picked up its first win of the season, defeating Carroll County, 4-2, Thursday. Carroll head coach Jimmy Ray said his team lacked enthusiasm, which was kind of disappointing since it was a district game at rival Gallatin. 

The Panthers managed just two hits against the Wildcats. Ray said there were a couple other hard hits in the game, but they were hit right at the Gallatin defense.

Carroll opened the game with a 2-0 lead, off singles by Austin Dunn and Seth Hicks. John Michael Adams was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Zakk Hicks reached on an error, allowing Dunn to score. With two outs, Jacob Wise also was hit by a pitch, scoring Seth Hicks.

But the Wildcats answered by scoring two runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning. Neither team scored again until the bottom of the fifth, when Gallatin plated two runs, enough to give it the win.

Carroll played without starters Austin Crowell and Jackson “Boo” Donahue who were injured, and Justin Ray was hindered by illness, Coach Ray said. However, there were still plenty of good players on the team that did play, he said.

Seth Hicks pitched the first two innings, giving up three hits, one walk and striking out one batter. Zakk Hicks pitched the last four innings, giving up three hits, three walks and striking out two batters.

Softball earns road win over Shelby

The Lady Panthers (5-0) built a 6-0 lead in the top of the fifth and defended it to win, 7-2, at Shelby County (2-4) Thursday, March 27.

Kayla Williamson hit a leadoff triple in the top of the first and was hit home on an RBI double to left field by Haley Dermon. Mackenzie Ogden singled, moving Dermon to third. Kelsey Ogden flew out to left field, but it was enough to allow Dermon to tag up and score, 2-0.

The Lady Panthers added two more in the top of the fourth as Michaela Culver drew a leadoff walk and Sarah Hawkins reached on an error. With two outs, Houston Lindsay singled, and Culver and courtesy runner Cheyenne Lawrence scored on another Shelby County error.

A leadoff single by Mackenzie Ogden, a double by Kelsey Ogden and a single by Culver resulted in two more runs in the top of the fifth, giving Carroll the 6-0 lead. Shelby County plated a run in the bottom half of the inning after a leadoff triple.

Carroll County’s final run came in the top of the seventh off an RBI single by Sarah Hawkins.

“Shelby County is better than they have been in the past,” head coach Dennis Hawkins said. “We got on them pretty quick and stayed on top of them.”

Hawkins said the Lady Rockets had pretty decent pitching, a sound defense and pretty good hitters throughout. “They can best you if you’re not on your game,” he said.

Sarah Hawkins pitched a complete game, giving up nine hits and a walk and striking out two batters.

Anderson posts eight-run inning to beat Carroll

What should have been at least a three-game weekend turned into one abbreviated game and a wet Saturday that ultimately canceled the rest of the tournament. The Lady Panthers traveled down I-71 to Oldham County for the fourth annual Oldham County Spring Break Classic Friday, March 28. The team was supposed to play two games that night and at least one game Saturday. But rain Friday night and into Saturday led organizers to cancel the rest of the event.

The Lady Panthers suffered their first loss of the season at the hands of the Anderson County Lady Bearcats, 8-0. Anderson (4-1) scored eight runs in the bottom of the second inning. Because of delays and the oncoming rain, the games were shortened to just an hour and 10 minutes, head coach Dennis Hawkins said, so the game only made it through three full innings.

Sarah Hawkins struggled on the mound, walking five batters and hitting one. Coach and father Dennis Hawkins said it was the most batters she has walked in five years. He said she has not been the same so far this year and has struggled to find a good grip on the new slick-coated balls. However, he was optimistic that she would improve as the season goes along.

The Lady Panthers had one bad inning, but “otherwise we held our own,” Hawkins said. “I think we can play with them. They just had one inning they got two or three hits on us. The umpire didn’t let us have any corners, so we had to just lay the ball down the middle. If you put the ball over the middle on a good team, they are going to crush it. We made some good plays in the outfield. We didn’t make that many errors, it’s just they’re a good team and they knew how to play ball.”

Carroll County put runners on base, but could not capitalize on them. Kayla Williamson opened the game with a leadoff single and Haley Dermon followed with a single. But with no outs, the Lady Panthers couldn’t get their teammates across the plate. In the top of the second, Mackenzi Hawkins singled with one out, but was not moved, and in the top of the third, Mackenzie Ogden doubled but remained on second.

“We had base runners, we had opportunities, we just didn’t get them in the right time,” Hawkins said. “We had some nice hits that were robbed.”

Despite the loss, Hawkins said he is satisfied and optimistic about where his team stands.

“We’re 5-1 right now, best I think it’s ever been since I’ve been here, and I expect, after the Woodford County tournament, going on a winning streak.”

The Lady Panthers finish their spring break with the Woodford County Spring Break Tournament Friday and Saturday. The team is scheduled to play two games Friday and compete in a single elimination tournament Saturday. Hawkins said he expects to win some games at Woodford too, but will have to do so without senior starter Williamson, who will be on vacation.

“In Woodford County, we’re going to be playing some good teams in that they are going to give them a challenge as far as pitching and hitting and getting them out,” Hawkins said. “But it’s good for us. We’re not going to run into any better pitchers than what we’ve already seen.”


Baseball falls to Edmonson County

The Panthers lost their spring break tournament opener to Edmonson County, 6-5, Monday in the General Spring Break Bash at Thomas Nelson High School.

Zakk Hicks struck out seven batters, but also walked five and gave up nine hits. Panthers head coach Jimmy Ray said Hicks pitched very well, but the defense let him down. Ray said the Panthers made an error in the first inning to give up a run, another in the third resulting in two runs and lost a fly ball in the sun in the sixth inning.

Down 3-0 after three, the Panthers scored three runs in the top of the fourth to tie. But Edmonson County answered with three runs in the bottom of the sixth, and the Panthers could plate just two in the top of the seventh to end the game.

John Michael Adams and Justin Ray led the Panthers with two hits each.