3/26 Charlotte Virtual Softball Games
Not to be outdone by their baseball counterparts, the 2020 Charlotte Virtual Softball League decided to do a little Midnight Madness of their own. Coach Kevin Hinde of Charlotte Christian agreed to host the first ever virtual matchup of his group and Parkwood High School. Also on hand was Appalachian State Junior Baylee Morton, a graduate of Parkwood, to throw out the first pitch. That was only the beginning of the fireworks!
Charlotte Christian 7
The bats were hot in this matchup from batter one in the top of the first. Jenna Whelan led off the game with a triple to right center and the hits on both sides just kept coming. Whelan, Taylor Breidt, Chloe Hardy and Natalie Ruth all had 3 hits for the Rebels. Jenna Whelan was a home run short of the cycle. Charlotte Christian was down 8-1 after two, but made a furious comeback in the middle innings. Anna Barnett got things started in the third with a double and scored on a Wynne Gore Sac Fly, while MC Eaton and Mackenzie Prather both scored on a single by second baseman Laila Robinson. After a scoreless fourth, Eaton and Prather both scored on a single by third baseman Susan Donnelly cutting the lead to 8-7. From there it was all Parkwood as they scored two in the sixth and two in the seventh to improve to 5-0 on the season (1-0 virtual) while Charlotte Christian falls to 1-2 (0-1 virtual).
Jillian Thomas of Piedmont and Gabby Holloway of Cannon put on a show in Union County Thursday night. Both threw 3 hitters and each walked one on the evening, but it was a key string of plays in the bottom of the 2nd that would prove to be the difference. With two outs, third baseman Shea Griffin reached base on an error and moved to third on a single by Avery Bellai. Griffin then stole home on a throw back to pitcher on an iffy call by the virtual umpire. Otherwise these two teams may still be playing. Katie and Stephanie Grissom each had a hit for Cannon. The twins also each had 5 assists on the left side of the infield defensively. With the win, Piedmont moved to 4-1 (1-0 virtual) on the season while they handed Cannon their first loss to fall to 3-1 (0-1 virtual).
Myers Park 8
Weddington took an early lead in the second on a two run double by outfielder Maddy Walsuko and pitcher Morgan Nayle was on cruise control through four complete. That’s when the slow starting Mustangs finally kicked it in. Myers Park scored two in the fifth to tie it up on a controversial safe call at first when Whitney Formon beat out a drag bunt scoring pinch runner Claire Allison as well as Amy Lautenschlager from second when there was confusion on the call. The Mustangs then scored six in the sixth highlighted by a 2 RBI triple by Whittney Barringer and an RBI single by Evy Oxendine. Aniya King finished the damage with an RBI single scoring Brylie Major and Formon (who stole 3 bases on the evening). Walsuko, Grace Manning and Chloe Luzarrega each collected multiple hits for the Warriors who fell to 0-4 and (0-1 virtual). The Mustangs improved to 6-0 (1-0 virtual) to add to their best start in over a decade.
Marvin Ridge 8
The game of the night featured Waxhaw vs. Mint Hill and was one for the ages. It was a back and forth game as Marvin Ridge led 1-0 after one, Indy led 2-1 after two, Marvin Ridge led 3-2 after three and Indy took back the lead 4-3 after four. Finally a scoreless fifth led to both the Mavericks and Patriots scoring 2 in the sixth giving Independence the 6-5 lead heading to the seventh. With two outs in the top half of the inning, things looked bleak for Marvin Ridge. Cam Pfister then singled up the middle and that was followed a Madeleine Walker double putting runners at second and third for Ally Bigham. With two outs, Patriot Coach Amanda Jardina wanted to put the dangerous Bigham on to load the bases. The virtual umpire said that the pitches had to be thrown which had the coaches and crowd on edge. The Mint Hill Virtual Police Department had to restore order in the stands but as it stood, the pitches had to be thrown. With the catchers hand out for pitch #1 to the righthanded Bigham, the pitch sailed two feet outside while Bigham, as close to the plate as possible without stepping on it, dipped her back shoulder and took the pitch directly over the right field foul pole for a three run homer and a Maverick 8-6 lead. Riya Patel was able to get the Patriots 1,2,3 in the bottom of the inning for the win. Abriana Berry and Jaylin Adkins both had 3 hits and 3 RBI’s for the Patriots who fell to 2-3-1 (0-1 virtual) while the Mavericks improved to 3-1 (1-0 virtual).
Providence Day 3
Porter Ridge 2
In the upset special of the evening, the Pirates and Chargers came out like gang busters in the first both scoring two runs. Makayla Cuthbertson led off the game for Porter Ridge with a triple and later scored on a Kenlynn Walker two run single to put the Pirates up 2-0. Then the Chargers tied it up in the bottom half on a Jala Wright two run homer. What looked like a slugfest quickly turned into a pitcher duel. Jala Wright fanned eight Pirates over the next six innings while a combination of Lauren and Laney Love struck out twelve Chargers over the final 6 innings. Not wanting Jala Wright to beat them in the bottom of the seventh, she was walked with two outs bringing up Amanda Cruz. Cruz then singled to the outfield moving Wright to third and when the ball got away from the Pirate’s cut off there was going to be a play at the plate. It could have gone either way but the call was safe and the Chargers had the upset of the evening. The Chargers improved to 2-0 (1-0 virtual) while the Pirates fell to 2-1 (0-1 virtual).
South Meck 8
Ardrey Kell 4
Two teams that know each other all too well met on night one of the Charlotte Virtual Softball League. Conference foes that met in the first round of last year’s State Tournament after splitting the regular season meetings didn’t disappoint again. South Meck took an early 3-0 lead in the first using the speed of Megan and Macy Rapp to get on base for the power of Emily Hill that drove both in with an RBI double. That score held up until the top of the fourth when Ardrey Kell struck for three runs to tie the game. Abby Newton and Grace Kegley both scored on a triple by Abby Vieth to highlight the inning. Ardrey Kell took the lead in the top of the fifth when Lexi Markle homered to left. But it wasn’t meant to be for the Knights as Zoe Poore doubled in a run in the bottom of the sixth followed by a second double on the evening by Emily Hill plating two more. All said the Sabres scored five in the sixth to take the lead for good. Taylor Barlow set the Knights down 1,2,3 in the seventh to preserve the win. The Knights fell to 4-3 (0-1 virtual) and the Sabres improved to 4-1-1 (1-0 virtual)