RHS drops first Area game
By Brannon King for the FCT
The Russellville Lady Golden Tigers varsity softball team dropped a couple of games over the past week, one to the Central-Florence Wildcats and the other to the Lawrence County Red Devils.
March 14, Central came to RHS and defeated Russellville 2-0 in a low-scoring game. First-year Russellville head coach Kathryn Montgomery faced her alma mater on a cold day at the ballpark. The Wildcats improved their record to 12-1 on the season with the victory.
Both teams were scoreless until the top of the fourth inning when Central scored both of their runs. Janie Beth West drove home two runners with a double, and it was all that pitcher Laken DiStefano would need to get the win. DiStefano pitched all seven innings and gave up only two hits while striking out eight Golden Tigers and issuing one walk.
Russellville got hits from Alivia Clemmons and Alexis Taylor. Taylor also had a stolen base off of the Central defense. RHS managed to get a couple of additional baserunners as Sydney Burcham drew a walk and Kayla Cochran was hit by a pitch.
The Lawrence County Lady Devils came to Russellville March 16 for both teams’ first Class 5A, Area 16 game of the season, and LCHS ended up with a big 14-2 win. The Russellville defense struggled early and ended up committing four errors in the game. Lawrence County jumped on RHS in the top of the first inning with four runs and never looked back.
“We definitely gave away some unfortunate unearned runs in the beginning,” Montgomery said. “One popfly, one thrown-away ball, and they get to go all the way through their lineup in the first inning, so that means they get to see our pitchers more times than they should.”
With the defense struggling, it gave the Red Devils an advantage. “It just gives them the best opportunity to be successful at the plate, and they are already really good hitters,” Montgomery said. “When you’ve got really good hitting at the plate, you can’t give them an edge, and we did.”
Lawrence County added one run in the second inning and picked up more insurance in the late innings to improve their record to 15-9 on the season.
Russellville (7-8, 0-1) got two RBIs from Cochran on a double that scored Autumn Logan and Krista Sikes. Karlie Moore and Madison Murray also picked up doubles for RHS. Kalli Beth Daniel and AJ Taylor also reached base on hits.
Emma Whitfield got the start in the circle pitching for Russellville. She threw one inning, allowing four unearned runs on three hits and a walk. She struck out one and walked a batter. Megan Warhurst and Sikes came on in relief. Both allowed five runs, while four off of Warhurst were earned runs.