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Lady Eagles Get Past Milan For Conference Win
By David Sharp
Knox County caught a break when Bianca Capponetto’s hard hit to right center field rolled under the fence for a ground rule double in the fourth inning of a scoreless Tri-Rivers Conference softball match at Knox County.
Rachel Poston and her defense kept Milan runners at second and third base with one out in the September 8 contest. Poston knocked in Sarah Dooley for a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the inning.
The Lady Eagles (7-0, 1-0) sent ten batters to the plate in a five run fifth inning taking a 6-3 victory. Milan (1-7, 0-3) fought back with three straight hits in the top of the sixth, scoring all three of their runs.
The first three innings were scoreless. Olivia Nichols and Bailey Couch singled in the Lady Eagle first inning. Milan catcher Emily Sylvester caught Nichols stealing for the second out.
Lauren Dale alertly fired to Devin Gudehus at second base, cutting down Emily Sylvester attempting to stretch a pop fly single to a double with one down in the Milan second inning.
Rachel Poston and Lauren Dale singled with two down in the second inning. Knox County left three runners on base during the first two innings, stranding eight on the night.
Alyssa Forster had a two out Milan hit in the first but was left on base. The Lady Wildcats were missing three starters due to illness or injury. Hannah Sanders lit the fuse for a potential Wildcat rally with a leadoff fourth inning hit.
Rachel Poston fanned the next batter. Bianca Capponetto drilled a hit to the outfield. The speedy Milan shortstop Sanders would have likely scored the game’s first run had the softball not rolled under the fence for a ground rule double.
Milan had runners on second and third base with one out in a scoreless game. “We came out and played hard. We had a good mind set all the way through,” Milan coach Nate Dodson said.
“We had a lot of girls step up and do the job they were told to do tonight,” Nate Dodson said. “We came out hitting the ball well. If we score that run and take the lead in that game, who knows what happens.” Coach Dodson said of the possible game turning play.
Rachel Poston struck out Kailyn Watts with runners on second and third base with one down in the fourth inning. Olivia Nichols made a sure handed catch of a fly ball to end the inning without scoring.
Sarah Dooley drilled a line drive to left field opening the KCHS fourth inning. The softball bounded off the fielder’s glove for a two base error. Hannah Strange sacrificed Dooley to third base with one out.
Rachel Poston put the ball in play, grounding to shortstop. Sarah Dooley rolled home with the first run of the game as Hannah Sanders threw Poston out at first base.
Three Milan fly balls were caught for a three up three down Wildcat fifth inning. Dei Burgess stroked a pinch hit single leading off the KCHS fifth. Burgess stole second base and moved to third on a wild throw. Olivia Nichols walked. Hustead and Nichols wound up scoring on wild pitches. Knox County had another runner dash home for a score.
Bailey Couch and Devin Gudehus drew consecutive walks. Sarah Dooley singled loading the bases with none out. Nate Dodson replaced tiring starter Alyssa Forster with Savannah Taylor.
Alyssa Forster pitched four plus innings for Milan in her first game back from injury. Forster fanned four of her 23 batters faced with three walks on seven hits. Four of the six KCHS runs charged to Forster were earned. Ålyssa Forster was tagged with the loss in the circle.
Hannah Strange walked greeting Savannah Taylor. The Milan reliever fanned Rachel Poston for the next out. Lauren Dale lofted a sac fly for an RBI. Kathleen Hinkle plated a run with a single.
Knox County led 6-0 after five innings. Alyssa Forster ignited a three run rally with a two out hit. Bianca Capponetto and Kailyn Watts made it three consecutive two out Lady Wildcat singles.
The Lady Eagles threw the ball away twice when Emily Sylvester put the ball in play with the bases loaded and two out in the sixth inning. An outfield error let in another run on the previous play.
Olivia Nichols helped restore order, catching a fly ball for the final out of the sixth inning. Hannah Sanders robbed Bailey Couch of her third hit with a running catch in the KCHS sixth inning.
The first two batters in the Milan seventh inning were retired in order. Kyley Doak and Hannah Sanders singled, bringing the tying run to the plate with two out in the seventh inning. Milan executed a double steal, putting runners on second and third base.
Olivia Nichols ended three of the seven innings with a fly ball catch, including the game clincher. Knox County scored six runs on nine hits and two errors. Rachel Poston struck out seven of her 30 batters faced for the win. Poston did not walk a batter.
Bailey Couch was 2-3 with a run scored. Seven different Lady Eagles had a hit each in a team effort. Sarah Dooley scored twice for Knox County. The Lady Eagles drew five walks from Milan pitchers.
Milan scored three runs on eight hits and four errors. Savannah Taylor pitched two scoreless innings for Milan. Hannah Sanders, Alyssa Forster and Bianca Capponetto had two Lady Wildcat hits each.