Archive for Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Shutdown pitchers lead McLouth to 4-0 start

April 16, 2008

— Like most local prep teams, the McLouth High softball squad had to endure a slew of weather-related postponements of late, but the time off didn't slow down the Bulldogs.

MHS swept visiting Jeff West on Monday night. The Bulldogs won both games in five innings, 13-3 and 10-0, to improve to 4-0 on the season.

Junior Lezley "Lulu" Lawson pitched the first game of the doubleheader for McLouth and allowed just two hits while striking out 12 batters in five innings.

Offensively, the Bulldogs were just as productive. Deanna Durkes went 3-for-4 with a single, two doubles and two RBI. Stacie Stauch was 2-for-3 with a double and three RBI. Kendall Patterson went 2-for-3 and Lawson was 1-for-1 with a double, though she was just getting started.

"Lulu had a huge night," MHS coach Ballard Patterson said.

Indeed, Lawson followed up her stellar pitching performance with a dominant batting display in the second game. She was 4-for-4 with two home runs and four RBI.

"Both were monster shots," Patterson said of the homers, one hit to left-center and the other to dead center.

The coach said Lawson is tough to pitch around because she can hit inside and outside pitches alike.

"You've got to pick your poison when she's on like she was," Patterson said.

McLouth was able to shut out Jeff West in the second game because of another standout pitching performance, which came from Sam Farris. She also struck out 12 and gave up no hits. Only one Jeff West runner reached base on a throwing error in the fifth inning.

Patterson praised his pair of power pitchers, saying that Lawson and Farris are both No. 1 starters and both extremely effective.

"And they both have strengths," their coach said. "Lulu will just flat out throw it by you. Sam is good at hitting spots and throwing her curve on the outside corner."

The Bulldogs did suffer a bit of a setback in the sweep. In the first game Melissa Rome collided with the Jeff West catcher and bit through her bottom lip. She was taken to the hospital for stitches, but Patterson expects her back in the lineup immediately.

In Rome's stead, freshman Jesse Troupe performed admirably. The shortstop was 3-for-4 with a double and three RBI in the second game.

Kendall Patterson was 2-for-3 with two singles in the 10-0 win. Her younger sister, Kaley, went 2-for-3 with a triple and a double.

As of Monday, MHS had outscored its opponents 46-3 this season.

The Bulldogs played at Pleasant Ridge on Tuesday and will play host to Atchison County on Thursday at 4:30 p.m.

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