Lady Vols lose home softball decision to Lady Patriots

Fallon Parker takes her turn at the plate for Starkville Academy on Tuesday.

Staff Writer

Several times during Tuesday’s game against the Heritage Academy Lady Patriots, the Starkville Academy Lady Volunteers were able to get the first two outs in an inning very easily.

It was finding that final out that was the problem for the Lady Vols.

Starkville Academy gave up five runs in the fifth inning and five more in the seventh inning, all with two outs, and it lost a 14-4 decision to Heritage Academy.

The Lady Vols held a 4-2 lead after two innings put just couldn’t put their opponent from Columbus away.

“They just put it in play and we gave them some extra outs,” Starkville Academy softball coach Thomas Berkery said. “We had them on the ropes as many innings as they had us with a couple of line out double plays. We probably hit twice as many balls hard as they did, but they just didn’t find holes.

“That’s not trying to belittle what they did, but I feel good about the way our girls swung the bat. There were just a couple of key situations where we didn’t get the hit. We swung it well and made good contact.”

After Heritage Academy jumped on top 1-0 in the first, Austin Tucker singled and scored for the Lady Vols to tie the game.

The Lady Patriots regained the advantage with a run in the second, but Starkville Academy responded with its most productive inning of three runs on four hits. Paisley Collota and Arlee Oswalt singled and scored each, while Bailey Carper doubled and came home on a single by Caden Cutshall.

The Lady Vols got five more hits throughout the rest of the game, but couldn’t get another more runs.

Carper led the 12-hit attack for Starkville Academy with a double and single, while Cutshall, Tucker, Collota and Oswalt had two singles each. Caralyne Montgomery had the only other extra base hit with a seventh-inning double.

Berkery said the loss to Heritage Academy was just another learning experience for his young team.

“There are little things just here and there that sometimes just have to happen so we can explain it and work through it,” Berkery said. “Every time something goes wrong or even goes right, we’re building off that and constantly teaching. They’ll make the improvement, but we’ve just got to keep working.”