Hibriten's softball team beats Watauga
by Steve Behr Sports Editor
LENOIR -- It took a second time facing Watauga's pitching for Hibriten's softball team to find its offense.
Hibriten did not score in the first two innings of its game with the visiting Pioneers, but made up for it by scoring the next three innings and claimed a 10-2 victory Wednesday night.
Hibriten racked up 12 hits against Watauga pitchers Megan Jackson and Michala McCune. The Panthers scored four runs in the third inning, three in the fourth and three more in the fifth to pull away from Watauga.
The Pioneers scored their first run in the first inning on back-to-back doubles by Shelby Winebarger and McCune of Hibriten pitcher Katie Bruce. Watauga didn't score again until the seventh inning on a McCune RBI single.
McCune finished 3-for-4 from the plate with two RBIs. Winebarger went 2-for-3 with two doubles.
"We were proud of the way the girls fought," Pioneers coach Stephanie Kostis said. "They went up in the first inning and they continued fighting."
Watauga finished with nine hits, but also left eight runners on base. Watauga left runners on second and third in the third inning and the bases loaded in the fourth.
Bruce settled down and set the Pioneers down in order in the fifth and sixth innings. McCune picked up her RBI single in the seventh with two outs.
"We left a lot of base runners on and that seems to be a common theme of our season right now, but we didn't give up," Kostis said. "We saw some diving plays and we saw the girls hustling. The girls wanted it tonight. It didn't happen, but we're using this loss and this experiences today to propel us into tomorrow."
Bruce struck out four batters, didn't walk any and hit one with a pitch in six innings of work.
The top of the Hibriten order created plenty of damage once it started catching up to the Watauga pitchers. Leadoff batter Emma Tuttle went 3-for-4 with a triple, and Anna Frye went 2-for-4 from the No. 2 position in the order.
Bruce, batting third in the lineup, walked three times and scored after each walk. She also had a single. Brittany Morton, hitting fourth in the order, belted a three-run double in the third inning. Laurie Pennell added two RBI singles in the game.
Watauga hosts Patton at 4:30 p.m. today.