PILOT MOUNTAIN — The Lady Cardinals came back from five runs down to beat Glenn 8-7.
East Surry began the game with a tribute for those whose lives have been touched by cancer. First the girls released balloons, then later they provided fireworks in the form of a four-run rally and then a grand slam.
Jessica Barker, who pitched a great game on Tuesday, got the start on Wednesday, too, but was relieved in the third inning.
She gave up one run in the second, then gave up three before being pulled for Kristen Cummings.
The defense didn’t give Barker good support that inning, noted Coach Derrick Hill. The first five batters reached as the scoring went single, error, single, error, double.
Cummings came into the game in a tough spot with runners on second and third and no one out. She got a ground ball out that allowed in one inherited runner, then she got the next two outs as well.
Cummings went on to pitch the last five innings, giving up just two runs.
Kristen only made one bad pitch all night, and the batter sent that one about 300 feet, Hill said.
To Jessica’s credit, she didn’t let her brief time on the mound affect her batting, the coach said.
In her first at-bat, she fouled off four pitches before finally making an out. Then in her second at-bat, she fouled off three pitches with two strikes on her before hitting an RBI double.
That was part of a four-run rally in the bottom of the third that cut the lead to 5-4.
The next time up, Barker fell behind 1-2 with the bases loaded, then cleared the bases with a homer.
Hill said he and his assistant try to teach the kids to use a good two-strike approach. He says to battle off pitches until one comes that the batter can handle. Jessica understands and follows through on that concept the best of anyone on the team, he said.
The homer gave East an 8-6 lead, and Cummings kept Glenn to one run the rest of the way to earn the victory.
Several players had good night, Hill said. Laken Bowman started the season on the JV team, but was pulled up in midseason. She hit a double in her first at-bat and then an RBI single later.
The team has been without two juniors starters this week. Brooke Bowman missed the past two games with a head injury, but is expected back on Friday. Ashley Smith is out a longer time after suffering a broken ankle.