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The Marion County Lady Knights varsity softball team had two games this past week, playing Nelson County at home March 20 and going on the road March 19 to play Washington County. The Lady Knights came out with victories in both of these games, taking their overall record to 3-0. The team's game on Friday night at Bethlehem was postponed due to rain, with no make-up date announced as of press time.
Marion County 11, Nelson County 0
The Marion County Lady Knights varsity softball team hosted Nelson County March 20 at Talley Field. After holding Nelson County scoreless, the Lady Knights were able to complete the game in five innings, picking up an 11-0 victory.
The Lady Knights would score early and often in this game and would have no trouble putting up a win. Marion County collected 11 hits in the game, with senior Emily Fenwick leading the way at the plate with three hits. Rebekah Taylor and Colleen Rakes added two hits each, while Madison Avritt, Ashley Walls, Jordan Thomas, and Ann Taylor Sandusky contributed one hit each in the win.
Ashley Walls was the winning pitcher for the Lady Knights, only allowing Nelson County one hit in the entire game. Walls struck out six batters in the contest, while allowing no walks to Nelson County batters.
"Ashley Walls threw a one-hitter in this game," Head Coach Todd Spalding said. "I have been watching her pitch for seven years and this is the best game I have ever seen her pitch. She had five strikeouts on drop curves and change-ups, both of which are pitches she never was able to throw previously. All the credit for that goes to our pitching coach, Morgan Pascal."
According to Spalding, offensively, Colleen Rakes, Rebekah Taylor, Madison Avritt and Jordan Thomas had big games. Emily Fenwick had three more hits in this game. For the first three games, Fenwick has nine hits in 11 at bats over, Spalding said.
"The only negative for this game was again our defense," he said. "Five more errors, which is unacceptable. At some point position changes will have to be made to put other players on the field who will catch the ball."
Nelson County 000 00 - 0 1
Marion County 243 2x - 11 11
The Marion County junior varsity softball team was also in action against Nelson County March 20, winning their game with a final score of 6-5. The Lady Knights were able to get six hits against Nelson County, with Kylie Benningfield leading the way with two hits. Lauren Farmer, Kendall Benningfield, Casey Brockman, and Kaitlin Masterson each added one hit in the win. Morgan Avritt was the winning pitcher for the junior varsity Lady Knights.
Marion County 16, Washington County 5
The Lady Knights traveled to Springfield March 19 to take on Washington County. Despite falling behind early in the game, Marion County was able to bounce back and go on to win big, with a final score of 16-5.
The Lady Knights allowed Washington County to push four runs across the plate in the second inning. However, in the fourth inning, Marion County scored five runs of its own off of five hits to take a 5-4 lead. Washington County would only score one more run in the game, while the Lady Knights would score 11 more runs off of several hits.
As a team, Marion County collected 17 hits in the game, with Jordan Thomas leading the way at the plate with four hits. Emily Fenwick and Rebekah Taylor each contributed three hits, while Abby Miles and Madison Avritt added two hits. Abby Hamilton, Ashley Walls, and Ann Taylor Sandusky each had one hit.
Ashley Walls was the winning pitcher for Marion County, allowing five runs off of eight Washington County hits, allowing three walks and striking out seven batters.
"After a terrible start in which we trailed 4-0 after three innings, our bats finally came alive," Spalding said. "We had 17 hits, which is an unbelievable number for a fast pitch softball game."
Abby Miles, Madison Avritt, Rebekah Taylor and Emily Fenwick all had a multi-hit game but the offensive star was Jordan Thomas, he said. Thomas had four hits, including two triples and a double, while scoring four runs and driving in four runs.
"Obviously, Washington County is a rival of ours and they are much improved, so it was a nice win," Spalding said. "However, our defense was terrible in this game and if we expect to beat the better teams on our schedule we must stop leaving outs on the field."
Marion Co. 000 523 6 - 16 17
Wash. Co. 040 001 0 - 5 8
The Marion County Lady Knights junior varsity softball team also played March 19 at Washington County, where they lost, 5-3. Kendall Benningfield and McKenzie Reynolds had the only hits for Marion County, Benningfield with two hits and Reynolds with one. Madison Avritt was the losing pitcher for the junior varsity team.
The junior varsity team also traveled to Garrard County Saturday to compete in a tournament. The team went 2-0 on the day, winning the tournament.
In the first game against Pulaski County, Marion County won 11-7. Lauren Farmer, Kylie Benningfield, and McKenzie Reynolds had two hits each. Reynolds and Benningfield had two RBI each while Kendall Benningfield had three RBI. Jordan Thomas was the winning pitcher for the Lady Knights.
In the championship game against Garrard County, the Lady Knights won 6-4. Jordan Thomas led the way with three hits, while Kylie Benningfield added two hits. Lauren Farmer had a key two run triple and C.J. Burton also had a big hit in the game. Madison Avritt was the winning pitcher for Marion County.
Coach Spalding said all of the players gave great effort, while having little errors in the tournament.
"Lauren Farmer, Kylie Benningfield and Jordan Thomas had great days at the plate," he said. "It was a big day for Farmer. The only thing that has kept her from starting on the varsity team in hitting and she is rapidly improving."
Spalding also commented that Madison Avritt pitched well.
"We tell our kids that winning is a habit and losing is a habit," he said. "We are now 9-1 collectively at all divisions of our program so this has been a great start to what we hope to build."