Avery Sanders had two shaky innings to begin the game, but she held on and picked up another win for the Hannibal Middle School softball team Thursday night as the Lady Pirates beat Monroe City 19-4 in four innings.
“I was proud of the way they batted,” Hannibal coach Zach Campbell said. “They really moved each other around really well. Defensively we need to clean up a few things, but other than that it was a clean game.”
Sanders allowed one run in the top of the first inning, but the Lady Pirates offense backed her up in the bottom half with six runs. The Lady Pirates sent 10 batters to the plate with eight of them reaching. Sanders herself reach base in the first and scored.
Unable to get a shut-down inning in the second, Monroe City added three runs to cut Hannibal’s lead to 6-4. But the Lady Panthers would not get any closer as the failed to score the rest of the game.
After opening the second with a strike out, Monroe City’s Michaela Gottman reached via a walk and Aleah Cox singled. After another strikeout, both runners came around to score on a hit by Shaimeka Williams. Williams then scored on a hit by Haylee White.
White and Alexis Westmoreland were the only two Lady Panthers to reach base in every at bat. White was 2-for-2 with a walk and was stranded at third base twice while Westmoreland was 2-for-2.
In the bottom of the second Hannibal scored just once to increase its lead to 7-4. It wasn’t until the bottom of the third when the Lady Pirates offense came together like it did in the first inning. Hannibal batted through its lineup and scored eight times to increase the lead to 15-4.
“One thing we focus on is every time you go up to bat, approach it like you are going to get a base hit,” Campbell said. “With runners in scoring position we will normally try to move girls around, but fortunately tonight we didn’t have to worry about the small ball as much, so I got to let the girls have a little more freedom and swing the bat some more.”
The Lady Pirates scored four more times in the bottom of the fourth before the game was called via the 15-run lead after 4 innings mercy rule.
On the mound, Sanders racked up 8 strikeouts while walking two and allowing four runs.
“I thought my performance was ok,” Sanders said. “It wasn’t my best, but I thought I did ok overall.”
Campbell was pleased with his pitcher’s performance.
Page 2 of 2 - “I can always expect her to compete,” Campbell said. “She is a special pitcher and honestly I was a little surprised with how the other team did hit her. I thought it would be more of her overpowering them, but they did a nice job.”
Olivia Pfiefer and Matti Sutter were both perfect at the plate. Pfiefer went 4-for-4 and scored twice while Sutter was 2-for-2 with one run scored. Taylor Smashey, Taylor Vandelicht and Sanders were all 3-for-4. Smashey and Sanders both scored three times while Vandelicht crossed the plate twice.