Thursday, August 11, 2004

Lady Patriots start softball season with 4-3 mark

By BARRY BURLESON
Editor

The Marshall Academy Lady Patriots had a busy opening week on the softball diamond.

They’re off to a 4-3 start, with wins over Lee (MS), Kirk, Deer Creek and Lee Marianna, Ark., and all three losses to Bayou. All seven games were played away from home.

The Lady Patriots started the season Monday, Aug. 1, with a 5-1 victory over Lee in Clarksdale.

“We played error-free, which helped tremendously,” said head coach Louanne Tomlinson.

Lauren Alexander was the winning pitcher, and she also led the offensive attack with two singles.

The next day, Tuesday, Aug. 2, Marshall Academy invaded Grenada and dominated Kirk 13-2.

Alexander slapped a triple, good for three runs-batted-in. Allie Kriss also had three RBIs on three singles.

Alexander again earned the victory on the mound. Casey Gibson threw in relief.

“Our defense was good again,” Tomlinson said. “We only made two errors.”

Hitting woes struck Thursday of last week as the Lady Patriots dropped a doubleheader at Bayou – 6-2 and 4-0.

Heather Tomlinson had a single and the two RBIs in game one.

In game two, MA produced just one hit, a single from Kristina Polk.

“We did not hit the ball at all,” Tomlinson said. “Bayou is very well coached, and they did a good job placing the ball. Our defense was good again; they just dropped it in the holes.”

Casey Gibson and Alexander took the pitching losses.

The Lady Patriots then went 2-1 in the Bayou Tournament on Saturday.

Mandy Bolden, Alexander and H. Tomlinson led the hitting effort in a 10-2 rout of Deer Creek.

Bolden connected for two singles and a double, good for three RBIs. H. Tomlinson added two singles and two RBIs. Alexander had a single and two RBIs.

Casey Gibson was the winning pitcher.

Early season nemesis and host school Bayou Academy then knocked off MA 3-1.

H. Tomlinson had a single and the lone RBI for the Lady Patriots.

“It should have been a 1-0 win for us,” Coach Tomlinson said. “We had three errors in the first inning that gave them their three runs. That beat us.

“Plus, we still didn’t hit the ball good against their pitcher.”

Alexander was the losing pitcher.

Marshall bounced back for an 8-3 win over Lee Marianna to wrap up its tournament play.

“We played a lot of our younger players, and I’m proud of them,” Tomlinson said. “It’s a good group.”

Sam Galimore produced three RBIs. Alison Hutchens added a double.

Polk started on the mound and recorded the win. Kristen Feathers and Courtney Gibson also pitched.

The Lady Patriots still field a young team with only two seniors – Polk and Anne Bishop. The majority of the squad is made up of eighth- 10th graders.

Last year they finished 19-10 and just one win short of the state tournament. Tomlinson is looking for more success.

“I think we will have a good season,” she said.

The Lady Patriots were scheduled to host Bayou on Monday of this week and visit Indianola on Tuesday. They entertain Carroll and Lee (MS) next Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 15 and 16, at 4 p.m.


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