Clinton Christian shuts down PCA

Published 9:12 am Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Porters Chapel Academy’s softball team got off to a bad start Monday night against Clinton Christian Academy and never was able to make up ground in an error-heavy 12-0 loss at Bazinsky Park.

The Lady Eagles committed eight errors in the game, and Clinton Christian scored seven unearned runs in the first inning.

“Over the course of the last week, week and a half, not just one thing has gone wrong, it’s all gone wrong,” PCA coach Amanda Yocum said. “Hitting, defense, base running, we’re not doing any of it the way we’re suppose to at this point.”

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Abbey Allen went 2-for-2 with two RBIs and two runs scored for Clinton Christian (21-2), which shut out Porters Chapel (16-6) for the second time in a week. Maklya Hunter tripled, homered, and drove in four runs.

Pitcher Kaeleigh Crutchfield struck out four batters while throwing a four-inning one-hitter. She didn’t walk a batter.

PCA pitcher Hannah Embry walked four batters and gave up nine hits.

“Our pitcher did throw well,” Yocum said. “(The problem was) Too many errors.”

Yocum estimated the Lady Eagles committed at least eight errors on the night.

“There’s actually probably more than that,” Yocum said. “There’s probably a few more that were missed.”

The Lady Warriors went on to score two more runs in the second inning, one in the third and two in the fourth. Hunter’s solo home run led off the fourth inning and made it 11-0.

“They hit the ball well,” Yocum said. “They put the ball in play and that’s what they needed to do and we made errors. On a good hitting team, you can’t make errors and win a ballgame.”

During the second inning, Sabrina Embry singled up the middle for the lone hit of the night for PCA. It came a couple of batters after Chelsea Myers was hit with a pitch, but the Lady Eagles were not able to get any runs.

After a strong start to their season, the Lady Eagles have now dropped to second place in District 5-AA. PCA hosts Wilkinson County Christian Tuesday at 4 p.m. in another district game. The Class AA South State tournament is Sept. 24 and 26 at Amite School Center in Liberty.

The top four teams from each district move on to the South State tournament. PCA is in a good position to move ahead to the playoffs in the, but it is now a matter of where the team will be seeded.

“That (loss) pushed us out of first. But we still have four district games left … we still have a lot of games left to play,” Yocum said.

To prepare for the rest of the district schedule, Yocum said the Lady Eagles would have to work on their hitting and adjust to the different speed pitchers they’ll face in the coming games.

“We’ll have to go from hitting the faster pitch to the slower pitch,” she said. “That makes it difficult.”

Yocum thinks her team’s recent slump — it is 7-6 in its last 13 games — is due to outside factors, fatigue and being too comfortable with their position in the district.

“Our girls have a lot going on. Some of them do dual sports,” Yocum said.

Hartfield Academy 17, St. Aloysius 8

Grace Upshaw went 3-for-3 with four RBIs, but St. Aloysius (1-8) let a lead slip away Monday and lost to Hartfield Academy.

St. Al overcame a five-run deficit to take the lead in the fourth inning. Upshaw’s two-run single gave the Lady Flashes a 7-6 lead after they had trailed 6-1.

Hartfield stormed back, however, scoring twice in the bottom of the fourth to regain the lead and then pulling away from there. The Lady Hawks struck for three runs in the fifth inning and six more in the bottom of the sixth.

Amelia Myers and Cailey Walker each scored four runs for Hartfield (9-5), while Jaycee Calendar went 3-for-5 with three RBIs. Gabby Burney drove in two runs.

St. Al’s pitchers walked 11 batters and the team committed 10 errors.

Jordan McDonald was 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored for St. Al, while Anna Katherine Beauchamp scored three runs. Michelle Howington had two hits and drove in a run.