Anderson mows down Missy Gators

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 1, 2002

Anna Mitchell of Warren Central eyes the ball as she takes a swing. She had two hits and two RBIs. (The Vicksburg Post/C. TODD SHERMAN)

[03/01/02]Lauren Anderson got mad after she walked the first batter she faced. And when the Warren Central freshman got fired up, Vicksburg High’s batters started sitting down.

Anderson struck out seven of the next eight Missy Gators she faced, and Anna Mitchell had two hits and two RBIs as the Lady Vikes (8-1) won their division opener, 4-0.

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Catcher Katie Barnett and Anderson “are a great combination,” WC coach Lucy Young said. “They do a great job of working the batters together.”

Anderson finished with 15 strikeouts, allowed two hits and walked only one more batter after the leadoff base on balls to Katie Jenkins.

“My changeup and my curve were working good,” said Anderson, who gave up back-to-back singles in the third inning one on a bunt by Jenkins and struck out the side in the second and fourth innings.

The Missy Gators (2-2) didn’t hit a ball out of the infield until the seventh inning, when Lauren Johnson lined out to center.

“Our bats just weren’t here and errors cost us,” VHS coach Jennifer Wilkerson said. “We just can’t get down. We’re improving … we just have to work hard.”

WC’s defense was solid throughout the game, but VHS’ broke down for one inning. WC got three runs in the third after VHS mistakes.

Marilyn Landers had two infield hits for WC, setting the stage for Mitchell both times. Mitchell ripped a liner to left-center in the first inning to score Landers, then hit another up the left-field line in the third. Landers’ slide at home knocked the ball out of catcher Kelsey Hudson’s glove. WC’s Ashley Vinzant, running for Barnett, then scored on a wild pitch and a bad throw to first let Mitchell score the final run.

“I used to get nervous in those situations, but I’ve learned to relax and just see the ball,” Mitchell said.

The temperatures, which dipped into the 30s, didn’t bother her.

“I love playing in cold weather,” she said with a smile.

Landers made the biggest defensive play of the game from her spot in center field. She scooped up Wendy Womble’s single and gunned down Jenkins, who was trying to score from second. Barnett tagged her several steps in front of the plate.

“That was just a beautiful play,” Young said.

In the fourth, Landers was on the other end of a nice play when Hudson dove to catch her foul popup almost halfway up the first-base line. But the offense couldn’t get anything going after that.

Emily Mathes took the loss, striking out five, walking one and allowing six hits.

Saturday’s Lady Vikes Invitational, which was to have included along St. Aloysius, Cleveland, Richland and Oak Grove (La.), has been rained out.