Slam sparks Bryant sweep
EDITOR’S NOTE: In this time of COVID-19, with no sports action, BryantDaily.com will be posting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on BryantDaily.com (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).
CABOT — For the second time in as many games, Bryant senior Mo McDaniel blasted a grand slam home run as the Lady Hornets swept a 7A-Central Conference doubleheader at Cabot 6-1 and 7-1 on Monday, April 21.
McDaniel had highlighted a 6-1 win at Conway on Friday, April 18, with a four-run round-tripper to right-center. This time, she got the Lady Hornets on the way to victory with a shot to left-center to break up a scoreless game in the top of the fourth of the first game of the twinbill. She added two hits and two runs batted in during the nightcap.
The victories improved the Lady Hornets to 13-5 overall and 6-2 in the league as they stayed tied with Conway for second place behind unbeaten North Little Rock, which just happened to be their next opponent (see related story).
In the opening win over Cabot, Christen Kirchner allowed just three hits over the first six innings, working around two of those in the first.
The Lady Hornets couldn’t get anything going either until, in the fourth, Kristen Dorsey walked, Paige Turpin sacrificed and Kirchner doubled, sending Dorsey to third. A walk to Kim Wilson loaded the bases for McDaniel who unloaded on an 0-2 delivery.
Two more scored in the fifth, sparked by a double from Shanika Johnson. Two outs later, Turpin legged out an RBI triple to make it 5-0. She scored on Kirchner’s second two-bagger.
Cabot put together three singles to load the bases in the bottom of the seventh. A run was walked in but Kirchner retired the next two to close out the win.
In the second game, Cabot grabbed the first lead. A two-out error allowed the run to score.
Bryant answered with a five-run outburst in the bottom of the inning. A one-out single by Sarah Hart instigated the uprising. Johnson was hit by a pitch and Morgan Seelinger got a sacrifice bunt down that drew a bad throw to first, allowing Hart to score from second to tie it. Dorsey followed with the first of her two triples in the game, chasing home Johnson and Seelinger. An out later, Dorsey scored when Kirchner reached on an error to make it 4-1. Kirchner swiped second, took third on a base hit by Wilson and scored on a sharp single up the middle by McDaniel.
The Lady Hornets added two in the fourth when Dorsey tripled and scored on a passed ball and, later, Kirchner walked, stole second and raced home on McDaniel’s two-out hit.
Kirchner allowed just three hits in the game. She struck out four without a walk. After the second, no Cabot baserunner got past second.