Anderson’s arm, Johnson’s bat slam VHS

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Vicksburg High’s Courtney Prentiss (12) slides safely into home as Warren Central catcher Lake Ashley reaches to catch an errant throw during the Lady Vikes’ 7-3 Divsion 6-5A victory on Tuesday at Warren Central’s softball field. (Jon GiffinThe Vicksburg Post)

Lauren Anderson allowed one hit and struck out 10 through seven innings and Warren Central defeated rival Vicksburg 7-3 on Tuesday night.

Playing in only her second game of the season because of basketball, Cookie Johnson paced the Lady Vikes at the plate with three of their eight hits and an RBI. Brittany Fuller added two hits and an RBI.

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“We had been working on hitting all week, and it finally came through for us,” Anderson said.

Ahead 4-0 in the sixth inning, Warren Central nearly gave away the lead with four errors that led to three Vicksburg runs. The Lady Vikes responded in the bottom half with three runs of their own to ensure the victory.

“We made some errors there,” WC coach Lucy Young said. “But I was especially pleased with the way we came back, even though we panicked a little bit there.

“We had four runs on the board so we had a little room for error.”

The Missy Gators committed four errors of their own in the game, and only four of WC’s seven runs were earned.

“We gave the ballgame away, pretty much, with errors,” VHS coach Laquitta Smith said. “We couldn’t hit the ball. That’s been the whole situation this season. We just have trouble hitting a faster pitcher.”

With wins over Vicksburg and Natchez, Warren Central (3-3, 2-0) emerges as the frontrunner in Division 6-5A, with rematches against each team later in the season.

“That was a pretty big win,” Anderson said. “It put us ahead in the district. And of course, it was a good win against Vicksburg. We never want to lose on our home field.”

In her first five innings of work, Anderson dominated the Missy Gators (2-5, 0-1), allowing only a single by Kristi Shelby, as the Lady Vikes staked a 4-0 lead.

She kept the Vicksburg hitters off-balanced by mixing her inside fastball with a sharp rise-ball. Anderson totaled seven strikeouts through five innings, including mowing down the side in the fifth inning.

But a series of blunders by Warren Central nearly cost the lead. The Lady Vikes committed four errors in the top of the sixth that led to three VHS runs.

“I got uptight a little bit, but I never really get nervous,” Anderson said of the inning. “I just calm myself down and do what I can to put the ball in there.”

Despite the momentum swing, the Lady Vikes responded with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to secure the win.

“That’s the thing that we tried to emphasized is we’ve got to get some runs across the plate,” Young said, “so that if something bad does happen which just seems like you’re going to have some little glitch in there that we’d have something to work with.”

Seventh-grader Andi Hearn started things off with a double down the right-field line.

Anna Miller followed with a bunt. Vicksburg pitcher Whitney Smith fielded the ball and tried unsuccessfully to get Hearn out at third.

Meanwhile, Miller rounded first on her way to second. She got caught in a rundown, and Hearn took advantage and scored. Miller eventually slid safely into second base.

Kristen Ashley picked up her second RBI of the game by singling in Miller.

With two outs, Tiffany Fuller reached on a Vicksburg error for the third time in the game and scored on a single by sister Brittany Fuller.

Anderson returned in the top of the seventh, striking out two of the three batters she faced to end the game.