Lady Eagles shine in win over Indian Hills CC
By By Richard Dark/The Meridian Star
Saturday, May 19, 2001
KISSIMMEE, Fla. It was a tough tournament filled with tough competition for the Meridian Community College Lady Eagle softball team.
But, the Lady Eagles had some bright spots too.
The brightest of those perhaps came in Friday's noon game against the Indian Hills Lady Warriors.
MCC finally put together a complete game and assured themselves of a tie for seventh place in the country as they whipped Indian Hills (Iowa) Community College, 7-2 to advance to the third round of the loser's bracket against Chattanooga State.
Afterward, MCC head coach Robert Eakins was surprised to learn his team was eager to play Chattanooga State.
He did know, however, how MCC made it happen in this one. "The key to this win was putting our team (.323) batting average in play. We did that and good things happened for us. But, unfortunately we're in the loser's bracket and we have to fight the odds and fight all day out here in this hot sun and we're going to do what we can."
Just as sophomore catcher Ashleigh Hicks predicted, a win was what MCC needed to get the sticks going. "It seems like the team is a little more relaxed now," she said afterward. "Those first two games, that wasn't us. I guess it took us getting here and getting used to everything before we were able to finally start putting it together."
Hitting was key for MCC, which left a man on base in each of the first two innings before finally getting back to its brand of softball in the third.
Former West Lauderdale standout Robin Holland singled sharply to right and LaKenya Wilson was beaned by a pitch from Lady Warriors' starter Molly Cope.
Dreka Shumpert fanned and Stephanie Dixon flew out to right. Faith Robinson then drew a walk from Cope.
Former Meridian High product Shanna Blanks then smacked an RBI single to snap the scoreless tie. Auriel Jenkins reached on an error by the shortstop that provided the 2-0 lead.
MCC hurler Amy Adcox responded in the top of the fourth by holding the Lady Warriors to just two hits and no runs. In the bottom of the frame, MCC picked up right where it left off when Nicole Jones got things going with a big single to deep left.
Holland advanced her with a sacrifice before Wilson doubled. Shumpert flew out to left, advancing the runners and Dixon blasted a two-run double to push the margin to 4-0.
But MCC wasn't finished just yet. Robinson single through the infield and Blanks cleaned off the bases with a dazzling three-run shot to end the Lady Eagles' scoring.
As the incessant heat continued to radiate, the Lady Warriors made it interesting in the top of the sixth. Three straight singles by Cope, Toni Orr and Ashley Anderson paved the way for two runs.
But that's as close as the Lady Warriors would get as Adcox gave them nothing to hit in the top of the seventh and the last three batters flew out and the losing pitcher Cope grounded out to short.
Adcox (29-4), who managed to stay ahead in the count for the better part of the game, got her second victory of the tourney by scattering eighty hits and striking out and walking only one batter, respectively.
Blanks went 2-for-2 with the dinger and Wilson put forth a 2-for-3 effort with a double.
Richard Dark is a sports writer for The Meridian Star. You can call him at 693 1551, ext. 3234 or E-mail him at email@example.com.