The Greensville County High School Lady Eagles softball squad exploded in the fourth inning and cemented an early win on the road against the Sussex Central High School Lady Tigers Thursday evening.
The game began routinely enough, with the Eagles leading off the top of the first inning with two runs, the second of which saw Rebecca Wrenn plating Skylar Ferguson on a drive to left field.
Sussex wasted little time in the home half of the opening inning, with leadoff hitter Destiny Hill taking a pitch off Greensville freshman Zaila Temple, making her first start on the mound and driving it all the way to the left field wall.
Hill would score seconds later after tripling, when Martika Hill would groundout to short to bring her across home.
Greensville would plate another run in the second, this time it would be Charlee Fore crossing home after a groundout by Tanyla Evans.
Sussex would again answer, after inning leadoff hitter Z. Vaughn singled to right and stole second, she advanced to third on a steal and then would cross home when Martika Hill batted her in.
The biggest highlight of the game for Sussex would come in the visiting half of the third, after Greensville’s Lenah Clements drew an inning-opening walk, Samantha Richard’s grounder to Destinee Hill led to Hill flipping to second baseman K. Williams, who then turned the double play to Makayla Wise to get Richard at first, clearing the bases.
The Lady Eagles, undeterred, would see Rebecca Wrenn draw a walk on a full count, then Briana Person would drive a 2-1 pitch from Martika Hill into center field, moving Wrenn to third. After Person stole second, a single to center by Fore scored both runners, making the score 5-2 Greensville after two and a half innings.
Sussex was unable to get anything going against Temple and the Lady Eagles defense in the third, leaving them down three runs as the Lady Eagles came up to bat in the fourth.
Eagles head coach Ruby Allen said she did nothing special heading into the fourth, but saw a change in her squad.
“The girls just decided to start hitting the ball well,” Allen said. “It was nothing I did, they just seemed to step on the gas themselves.”
It began with Evans drawing a leadoff walk and stealing second base, then Diamond Daniels would be hit by a pitch to take first.
Skylar Ferguson would score Evans with a hit to right, then Daniels would come in on a passed ball to Lenah Clements, who drew a walk.
Richard was batting when Ferguson would steal third, drawing an errant throw that led to her scoring. Richard would then walk after a wild pitch scored Clements.
Wrenn would drive a pitch to center, bringing in Richard, and Fore would bunt her way on base two batters later. Margaret Lumpkin followed with another bunt, and when Sussex rotated to field the ball, leaving first base uncovered, Wrenn would exploit the confusion to score.
A single by Evans followed, then Daniels would drive a pitch to center, scoring Evans. Ferguson would triple next, scoring Daniels, and Clements would follow with a towering drive that appeared had the distance to clear the wall, but instead hit the barrier and led to a double, scoring Ferguson.
The inning ended with the score 15-2 in favor of the visiting Lady Eagles.
Sussex was unable to answer Greensville after Allen put Lumpkin on the mound, and the sophomore got out of the inning facing only four batters.
Greensville added give more runs in the fifth inning, and Lumpkin shut the door on Sussex with a groundout and two strikeouts to invoke the Mercy Rule after five, with the score 20-2 for Greensville.
Allen was pleased by her team’s performance.
“Last week we had a lot of errors,” Allen said. “We worked on that and did a lot better today. A win like this is good for the kids’ morale going forward, hopefully they can carry that into our next game.”
Featured Photo: GCHS batter Skylar Ferguson swings at a pitch from Sussex Central’s Martika Hill during Thursday’s softball action in Sussex.