Pike County rolls past Abbeville in first area game

Published 10:53 pm Friday, March 7, 2014

Most coaches don’t want their teams in the headlines, but Pike County Karie Striplin loves it. She is in the process of rebuilding the Bulldog softball program, and feels her team took a big step towards their goal Friday night.

The Lady Bulldogs run-ruled area foe Abbeville 10-0 in five innings in Brundidge. Pike County jumped on the Lady Yellow Jackets early with three runs in the bottom of the first.

Pike County picked hits from Laken Maulden, Montana Brown and Shana Lee in the first. Brown, Lee and Bailey Bennett all brought home first-inning RBIs.

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Striplin feels the early lead was big for the confidence of the batters and pitcher Keri Taylor.

“When we got on base we were trying to push runners around,” said Striplin. “Everyone was more confident. Keri set the tone early, and out batters fed off that and the defense we were playing. It was a great night.”

The Lady Bulldogs picked up insurance runs in the second, third and fourth innings before ending it in the sixth.

Maulden brought home Taylor in the second inning on sacrifice, while Brooke Bennett scored took advantage of an error by the Lady Jackets in the third.

Pike County sent eight batters to the plate in the fourth, and tacked on four more runs, including two on a single by Brown.

Taylor got the win in the circle, pitching all five innings. She struck out _, didn’t walk a batter and scattered _ hits. At the plate Brown led Pike County. She went 3-for-4 with an RBI and three runs scored. Bennett went 2-for-3 and Shana Lee drove in a run on a first-inning triple

“Keri has picked up a drop ball this year, which is something that I have been working with her on,” said Striplin. “She was able to get ahead early in the count, and we threw the drop ball a lot, and they chased after it. The middle infield did an awesome job not letting it get out of the infield when they made contact.”

Pike County will carry some momentum in to a weekend tournament in Slocomb, and will see some familiar foes in the Mason Walding Invitational.

“Competitively I think everyone is evenly matched,” said Striplin. “We will play Geneva, Wicksburg and Zion Chapel. All present challenges, but we are ready to play.”

Pike County will return to regular season play on March 13 at Dale County.