SHERWOOD — Sarah Evans returned from a sprained ankle and launched a two-run homer in the first inning for the Bryant Lady Hornets who went on to an 11-0 romp in four innings over the Maumelle Lady Hornets in the first round of the Taylor Roark Memorial Softball Tournament on Friday.
Evans wound up 3 for 3 with five runs batted in for the Lady Hornets.
“It seems like nobody can figure out how to pitch her,” said Bryant head coach Lisa Dreher. “She’s hitting everything and hitting it hard.”
Shayla McKissock also went 3 for 3 while Regan Ryan and Macey Jaramillo each had two hits.
“Our slappers are coming alive,” Dreher asserted. “Shayla bunted her first at bat and when they came in on her, she slapped it past them. This is where we hoped she would be, but it’s a lot to ask of someone so new to slapping. She really understands how to run the bases too. Her first single, she saw second was open and the pitcher not watching, so she took second. After Sarah’s homerun, they were really on their heels.”
Meanwhile, Kerrigan Allen blanked Maumelle on two hits over the four frames. She walked two and struck out seven.
“Kerrigan’s pitching was on point,” Dreher commented. “All of her pitches were working and she’s throwing with confidence. I think she’ll compliment Raven (Loveless) really well because of all her variations of off-speed pitches.”
Loveless will return to the team this weekend after the Lady Hornets’ basketball season concluded on Friday at the Class 7A State Tournament in Cabot.
The Lady Hornets led 2-0 after the first. Allen pitched around a one-out single in the second and Bryant added to the lead. With one out in the home second, Regan Keesee singled and Megan Chism walked. Ryan beat out a bunt hit to load the bases for McKissock who drive in two with a double to center. Evans followed up with a two-run double to make it 6-0.
Allen and the Bryant defense set down Maumelle 1-2-3 in the top of the third then the onslaught continued in the home half.
With one out, Maddie Stephens, Ryan and McKissock beat out infield hits. Evans added to her RBI total with an infield hit before Julie Ward smacked a single to center to chase home a pair, making it 9-0.
Jaramillo put the Lady Hornets in line for the run-rule win by cracking a two-run single to right.
Maumelle managed two base-runners on a walk and an error in the top of the fourth but Allen ended the threat with a strikeout.
Bryant started its at-bat in the bottom of the fourth but the time limit arrived as the game concluded.
The Lady Hornets are set to continue in the tournament today, starting with a 9 a.m., battle with the Lake Hamilton Lady Wolves.