Lady Golden Tigers falter
By Brannon King for the FCT
The Russellville Golden Tigers fell to the Central-Florence Wildcats in varsity softball action April 4. RHS dropped a 3-1 decision as Laken DiStefano pitched a complete-game and struck out 15 Golden Tigers.
Russellville got on the board in the top of the first inning when Kalli Beth Daniel drew a walk and Makala O’Neal drove her home with an RBI single. Central answered with the help of RHS defensive errors with a run of their own in the bottom half of the inning and two more runs on miscues in the third.
RHS managed only four hits in the game, one each by AJ Taylor, Daniel, O’Neal and Madison Murray. Daniel and O’Neal also reached base on walks. Russellville (11-12) was active on the base paths with Daniel getting two stolen bases while Taylor and Murray had one apiece. A few mistakes by the Golden Tigers, including five errors, made things difficult against the good Central team that is 19-4 so far this season.
“If we don’t take advantage of the opportunities that we have, and if we give them more opportunities than we should, a good team is going to take advantage of it, and that’s exactly what they did,” Russellville head coach Kathryn Montgomery said.
The game brought the Russellville coach back to the field where she was a standout player for Central before going on to play at UNA, and she said it was a bit different being on the other side. “This is the first time that I’ve coached here since I graduated high school,” Montgomery said. “It was different, but where I am, I’m a Golden Tiger all the way through, and I want to beat Central every time we play them – we just haven’t done it yet.
“I hope we get another chance this season,” Montgomery added.
Three RHS pitchers allowed a total of five hits in the game. Krista Sikes got the start and pitched two innings before giving way to Emma Whitfield, who threw one inning, and Megan Warhurst pitched the final three frames for Russellville.
The game was delayed at the start because of rain, and coaches from both teams worked to keep the field in manageable playing condition.