Northwest Rankin stymies WC, Vicksburg|[8/23/06]

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Every time Warren Central got in a position to do some damage against Northwest Rankin on Tuesday, the Lady Vikes couldn’t find a place to put the ball.

With one well-placed swing, Northwest’s London Ladner showed them how it’s done.

Ladner broke a 2-2 tie with a two-run double in the top of the fifth inning, then brought in two more runs in the seventh with a fly ball that resulted in an error, leading the Lady Cougars to a 6-2 victory at Lady Vikes Field.

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Warren Central (1-2) managed only five hits in the game and didn’t advance a runner past second base after the second inning.

&#8220It’s our hitting,” WC coach Lucy Young said in explaining the loss. &#8220Scoring two runs in slow-pitch, we’re not going to be able to beat many people. They made some outstanding catches. We were robbed several times. But we just have to get some base hits.”

Although the Lady Vikes weren’t hitting well, they weren’t alone. Nine of Northwest Rankin’s 11 hits were singles, and most of those were scattered throughout the game. Northwest (5-2) did chain three hits together in the second inning – singles by Erica Johns and Ashley Franklin and an RBI double by Jasmine Taylor – to take a 2-0 lead.

The Lady Vikes tied the game in the bottom of the second, but still went back to the dugout shaking their heads at what they didn’t do more than celebrating what they did do.

WC loaded the bases with no outs, on singles by Mandy Fuller and Bridget Dillon and a walk to Fatima Chase. After that, no balls left the infield. The Lady Vikes hit into three fielder’s choices – including one on which Northwest shortstop Brandi Armstrong missed a tag, allowing a run to score – and ended the inning with a pop out by Shawn Johnson. Tay Wince drew a bases-loaded walk to bring in the other WC run.

&#8220That broke our back,” Young said.

The game remained tied until the fifth, when Northwest’s Jamy Bingham and Morgan Foster singled to put runners on first and second with two outs. Ladner followed with a line drive just over the glove of leaping WC second baseman Kari Lieberman. The ball split Chase and Wince in right field and rolled all the way to the fence, allowing both runners to score for a 4-2 Northwest lead.

&#8220It was an outside pitch, so I went with the pitch and luckily it hit a spot,” said Ladner, a freshman first baseman who finished 2-for-4 with a double, single and two RBIs.

Ladner got to play hero again in the seventh, when she came to the plate with two on and two out. She lined a shot to right, where Chase dropped it. Both runners scored to make it 6-2 and put the game out of reach.

The Lady Vikes were set down in order in the seventh as Bingham retired 13 of the last 15 batters she faced.

Northwest 10, VHS 0.

Northwest Rankin defeated the winless Missy Gators in six innings and held Vicksburg to one base hit.