Lady Devils lose in area

Published 7:59 pm Friday, March 8, 2013

The Escambia County High School Lady Blue Devils couldn’t overcome a slow start Thursday in a 14-6 loss to area foe Thomasville.

“We had a slow start,” said coach Darryl Otwell. “We walked too many batters and had too many mental errors.”

Lady Devils’ bats went quiet in the bottom of the first after spotting the Lady Tigers four runs in the top half of the inning. Thomasville pitcher Tiffany Drinkard retired ECHS’ first three hitters to end the inning.

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ECHS pitcher Kaylee Cox allowed a leadoff walk to start the second inning before hitting a batter with a pitch to load the bases. The jam, as well as two fielding errors by ECHS, allowed Thomasville to score four more runs in the top of the second.

Drinkard retired the next three ECHS hitters and the Lady Tigers came back up in the top of the third inning.

Cox allowed two singles and gave up a run before retiring the Thomasville side. The Lady Devils committed four errors in that inning.
Drinkard once again retired three ECHS hitters in a row.

Drinkard hit a looping  line drive to shallow right field that dropped down and rolled toward the fence and resulted in a leadoff inside-the-park home run for the pitcher to put Thomasville up 10-0.

Cox allowed two more singles before the ECHS defense settled in, making two big plays at third base off bunts to keep the Lady Tigers from doing any more damage.

Jasmine Ireland sparked the ECHS offense by beating out a single that was hit to the Thomasville second baseman. Cox followed with a single. Ireland and Cox later scored on a double by Ynetta Craft.

With ECHS trailing10-2, Heather Davis hit a single to move Craft to third. Craft later scored on a passed ball to cut the Lady Tigers lead to 10-3. Davis was called out at home on a ball hit by Searria Bullin.

The offensive production sparked more aggressive defense for the Lady Devils as Cox retired the Thomasville side in order with help from a snag in centerfield by Ychele Walker for the final out.

Walker took first base on a passed ball with two outs in the bottom of the fifth. She scored on a triple by Tristen Boothe to make the score 10-4 in favor of Thomasville.

An Ireland single scored Boothe from third. The score at the end of five innings was 10-5.

Thomasville picked up two more runs in the top of the sixth to increase its lead to 12-5.

Drinkard walked ECHS’ Taylor Hill, but settled in to retire the side in the bottom of the sixth.

With two outs in the top of the seventh inning, Drinkard reached first base on an infield grounder after no one covered the bag. Two more ECHS errors loaded the bases for Thomasville, which resulted in two more scores for the Lady Tigers. Thomasville took a 14-5 lead into the bottom of the inning.

Drinkard walked Walker, who later got into scoring position on a passed ball. Walker stole third and was brought around to score by an Ireland single to make it 14-6. Cox walked to move Ireland to second, but Hill was called out at first to end the game.

“The effort was there and the attitude was there,” Otwell said after the game. “We’re just not making plays.”