ENTERPRISE – Myrtle, the Daily Journal’s No. 10-ranked team, opened its Division 3-1A season with a bang Tuesday, as the visiting Lady Hawks defeated West Union 7-2.
Myrtle (11-4, 1-0) got a solid pitching performance from Caylie Streich, who struck out 11 Lady Eagles (2-8, 0-1) and limited them to four hits.
“Caylie pitched really great. Her arm (preseason wrist injury) is getting better,” Myrtle coach Brooke Gordon said.
The Lady Hawks have division doubleheaders scheduled for this week against Coldwater and H.W. Byers. They have a return game against West Union and two league games against Hickory Flat remaining.
“We’ve got maybe three weeks to get them (division games) in,” Gordon said. “I’m excited about it. I’d like to see a little more consistency one through nine. We hit, but not always to the right place and at the right time.
“I’d like to see us be a little more solid defensively. They’re battling, doing the things they need to do. They’re working hard and want to play, but there’s always room for improvement.”
Myrtle’s top half of the lineup – led by lead-off batter Sarah Kate Thompson and clean-up hitter Kinzie Waits – cranked out eight hits. Thompson had three singles while Waits had two singles and a double. Emma Mayer added a single and Kinsley Gordon had a triple.
The Lady Hawks finished with 11 hits off West Union’s Emma Callicutt.
“Sarah Kate puts the bat on the ball. We pretty much know she’s going to get on,” Gordon said. “Waits works hard and listens.”
The Lady Hawks took a 3-2 lead into the fourth when RBI singles by Thompson and Keragen McCullough gave them a 5-2 lead.
West Union scored its two runs in the bottom of the third on Annie Orman’s two-run homer off an 0-2 fastball from Streich. Callicutt, who had singled, was the runner Orman plated.
Waits added her RBI double in the Lady Hawks’ two-run seventh inning.