By Denis House
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
CORBIN—It’s not often that a team commits six errors and still wins a game.
But that’s exactly what happened Tuesday night in No. 25 South Laurel’s 12-4 win over Corbin. Luckily for the Lady Cards, the Lady Redhounds made five errors of their own.
“That’s what happens when you come out not focused,” South Laurel coach James Burns said of his team’s errors. “We didn’t play well. But nobody remembers the mistakes if you win, except for the coaches. We dream about them.”
Everything was going fine for South Laurel (18-4, 6-0) until the bottom of the fifth inning. The Lady Cards were leading 8-0, but four errors in the home half of the inning allowed Corbin (13-10, 3-2) to scored three runs on just one hit and cut the lead to five, 8-3.
“We just didn’t put them away,” Burns said. “We had runners on in every inning but just couldn’t get them in. This was a big game and we needed to be ready and more focused.”
South Laurel came into the game riding a 12-game winning streak, but Burns warned his team before the game that the win streak was good but they could get beat if they weren’t ready.
Early on, they looked ready.
By the end of the third, the lead was 8-0 on South looked ready to end the game early with the mercy rule.
Cassandra Johnson reached to open the game on an error then scored when Brittany Vandeventer bunted and Corbin failed to get her out. She would later score on a ground out by Hagan Burns for the 2-0 lead. Corbin put two runners on in the bottom of the inning but failed to push either run across.
Four more Lady Cardinal runs in the second made it 6-0.
Megan Smith, who also got the win, got things started with a single to center. Makenzie Powenski came in to run for her. She took off to steal second and collided with Corbin shortstop Kelly Farley as the ball went into centerfield.
A single by Chelsea Wemes drove in Powenski. Nell Murray then reached on an error, which moved Destiny Salva, running for Wemes, to third. She scored on a ground out by Laura Williams to make it 4-0.
Another ground out, this time by Johnson, scored Murray. Vandeventer reached on a Farley error, bringing Amber Hyde to the plate. She smacked a single off Hannah Hart to score Vandeventer for the 6-0 lead.
Two more South Laurel runs were scored in the top of the third when Wemes walked to lead things off. Salva again came into run for her. Murray followed with a double to right to put runners on second and third with no outs.
After Williams grounded out to first, Johnson reached on an error in center, which allowed Salva to score. A sacrifice fly by Vandeventer plated Murray as the lead grew to 8-0.
It stayed that way until the bottom of the fifth when the defensive wheels came off for South Laurel as the Lady Cards committed five errors.
With two outs, Lindsey Barton reached on an error by Vandeventer at third. Hart then singled to center, and the throw to third got past Vandeventer as all runners were safe.
Farley reached on another error which allowed a run to scored. Whitley Gatliff grounded back to Smith, but her throw to Bailey Miller at first was low and Gatliff was safe while Farley scored. One more error allowed Gatliff to score to cut the lead to 8-3.
South was able to shake off that inning and get one of those runs back in the top of the sixth as Hagan Burns led off with a single to left that was misplayed, which allowed her to advance to second. She moved to third on a ground out by Miller, then scored on a wild pitch.
The Lady Cards tacked three more runs on in the seventh to put some more breathing room between themselves and Corbin.
Williams led off with a single and stole second. With one out, Vandeventer singled to drive in Williams. Hyde followed with a single of her own. Now with two runners on, Burns flew out to right, but it was deep enough to score Vandeventer. Hyde was alert on the base paths and hustled home herself to make it 12-3.
Corbin scored a run in the bottom of the inning when Hart doubled and scored on a single by Gatliff, but Smith got the next two batters out to end the game.
“Megan pitched awesome,” Burns said. “We just made too many errors. On the positive side we won.”
South Laurel faced a tough foe Thursday night when it traveled to Danville to take on No. 12 Boyle County, a team that handed No. 2 Scott County its only loss of the season. South then travels to McCreary Central tonight.