Lady Wildcats shut out Lady Panthers, 8-0

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By Kristin Beck

Carroll surrendered 12 hits to Gallatin, falling 8-0 Thursday at home. The Lady Panthers (1-6) cut down on their fielding errors, but could not get the bats going offensively.

While bad weather has kept the Lady Panthers from practicing consistently, head coach Ken Blair said it is not an excuse.

“We’re obviously not prepared; we weren’t prepared for whatever reason,” he said. “We’re just not focused or ready to compete at this level. They do pretty good against people their own age. They’re just young; they’ve got a lot to learn.”

The Wildcats (7-1) started the game off strong. With one out and bases loaded, Danielle Nichelson singled to centerfield, scoring two runs. Kelsea Satchwell singled to right center to bring around two more, 4-0.

Gallatin picked up runs in the second, third and fifth innings with consistent hitting, including back-to-back RBI doubles in the third by Hannah Dossett and Nichelson.

The Lady Panthers threatened in the bottom of the fourth inning after Mackenzie Ogden led off with a single to centerfield and Kayla Williamson beat out the throw on a bunt. Unfortunately for the home team, Hannah McEndre’s bunt resulted in the lead runner being thrown out, and Sarah Hawkins’ hard line drive hit went straight into the pitcher’s glove, leading to a double play.

Carroll struggled in bunt situations throughout the night. While Williamson laid hers down in the fourth, the Lady Panthers had multiple opportunities to advance the runners with no outs, but failed. Blair said the team practices bunting a lot in practice, and they bunted better the night before against Owen County. The coach chalked it up to the “inconsistency of youth.”

“You’re on one time and off the next,” he said, “that’s just what young people do, in my experience.”

Junior Kayley Perry started the game on the mound, but is still recovering from pneumonia and pitched only two innings. Hawkins pitched in relief, striking out one batter and giving up zero walks.

The team also was without starting centerfielder Michaela Roberts and pinch runner Emily Baker. Both players sprained their ankles in the previous game.