Woodford jumps ahead early, holds off Franklin County

By Linda Younkin Published:

Woodford County’s softball team started Thursday’s game the way Franklin County wanted to —  with a strong showing and some early runs.

“We did not get out of the gate strong at all, kind of dug ourselves in a hole right from the start, and you can’t do that against good competition,” FCHS coach Tracy Spickard said after the Lady Flyers lost 5-4 at Sally Gaines Field.

“In our competitive district it’s critical to get out of the gate, and we didn’t do that.”

Woodford County, 9-5 overall and 2-0 in the district, scored two runs in the top of the first inning with a single by Kerstyn Coleman and two FCHS errors.

While the Lady Flyers were able to rally, they were never able to take the lead.

The Lady Yellow Jackets scored two more runs in the fourth for a 4-0 lead and then withstood Franklin County’s rally.

“This team has a lot of fight in them,” Spickard said. “They play with a lot of heart, but we just weren’t smart early. Defensively we gave them two runs in the first inning.

“On offense we talk about what their game plan is because we know what their game plan is — to get us to chase bad pitches out of the zone, and we did that for a good while initially.”

Woodford went ahead 4-0 in the fourth inning when Cheyenne Jamison hit a two-out single and Keely Mousette followed with a home run.

FCHS’ rally started in the bottom of the fourth. Sydney Wiard led off with a single, and Shelby Sanders drew a walk. Whitney Edwards hit a fly ball to right field that sent Jamie Jordan, running for Wiard, to third base, and Alyssa Gaines singled on a 1-2 count to score Jordan and Sanders.

Two strikeouts ended the inning.

The score stayed 4-2 until the sixth inning when Woodford picked up an insurance run when Morgan Grose beat out an infield single and scored on a triple by Jamison.

FCHS (6-1-1, 1-1) answered with two runs in the bottom of the sixth. Wiard hit a lead-off double, and with one out Edwards homered to pull the Lady Flyers within a run at 5-4.

Both teams went down in order in the seventh inning.

“On both sides of the ball we were not playing very smart,” Spickard said about the early stages of the game, “but then we did adjust. It just took us awhile to adjust. We didn’t adjust as soon as we should have, but we did adjust and did better, but still a strong start is so critically important.”

Wiard hit a double and single for FCHS, Edwards hit a home run, and Kara Howard and Gaines each had a base hit.

Mousette led Woodford with a home run and a double, and Jamison hit a triple and single. Kerstyn Coleman, Leah Shelton, Lindsay Anderson and Grose all singled.

Howard pitched for the Lady Flyers, and Bethany Todd pitched for Woodford.

“Like I said, they battled, made some adjustments at the plate,” Spickard said about her team. “We drew some walks, strung some hits together, put some pressure on them and held them for a while. We gave up that extra run late.

“Do I enjoy losing? Absolutely not. I can’t stand to lose. Am I extremely upset? No. There are things we’ve got to do better. It’s early, and we’ve got to execute better and play smarter all the way through. We’ll get better.”

Both teams will be playing in Franklin County’s Capital City Showcase tournament this weekend at Lakeview Park and Sally Gaines Field.

Woodford County plays Collins tonight at 5:30 at Lakeview Park, and FCHS will take on Boone County at 7 at Sally Gaines Field.

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