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Softball ends slump with win over Grant

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By Kristin Beck

Mackenzie Ogden’s two-run homer over the centerfield fence helped lift Carroll County to a 4-0 victory over Grant County at home Monday, April 8.

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Both teams struggled at the plate against two different types of pitchers. Carroll’s Sarah Hawkins excels at keeping the ball on the ground, allowing her infield to take care of business. She struck out four batters, while allowing just two hits and one walk.

Grant’s Kayla Cummins pitched at a slower speed than the Lady Panthers have been used to, and the home team took a while to adjust. Cummins struck out eight batters and allowed six hits and two walks.

“Pitching was pretty much the name of the game,” Coach Dennis Hawkins said.

Hawkins said his team was not patient at the plate at all. The batters were out on their front foot, even though he encouraged them to move up in the box.

But the Lady Panthers eventually found their rhythm.

In the bottom of the fifth, Carroll’s Haley Dermon led off with a groundball to shortstop, who made the play to first, but the first baseman pulled her foot, putting the freshman speedster on base. With one out, Ogden blasted a homerun over the centerfield fence to put her team on the scoreboard, 2-0.

Kayla Williamson followed with a single to centerfield, and Kelsey Ogden was hit by a pitch. Mackenzi Hawkins hit an RBI single past the second baseman and into right field. Hawkins ran for an extra base and was thrown out at second. But it was enough to allow Ogden to score, giving Carroll the 4-0 lead.

“If we can get one or two innings like that, we’ll be alright, (along) with Sarah throwing strikes,” Hawkins said.

Mackenzie Ogden led the team at the plate, going 2-4 with two RBIs.

Hawkins said this was just the third game where the team had all of their players. He said the team should be in pretty good shape from here on out as long as they can stay focused and stay healthy.

The Lady Panthers played at home Tuesday against Henry County (6-2). Results were unavailable by press time.

Carroll County (3-6) travels to Warsaw Thursday to take on Gallatin County (3-0) before hosting the 8th Region All-A Classic Friday. They will take on Walton-Verona (4-7).