NEW ALBANY – Myrtle coach Brooke Gordon was worried about how her softball team would respond following its 10-day layoff.
The Lady Hawks, behind 11 hits and a solid pitching performance from Caylie Streich, responded by defeating Union County rival New Albany 9-1 last week.
Myrtle (8-4) had not played since winning the county tournament championship March 19 in New Albany.
“I was a little worried. They hadn’t played since the Union County Tournament,” Gordon said. “We’ve been practicing, but it’s different when you play a game. I very proud they came out and put the bat on the ball and made defensive plays. We were glad to get to play. Caylie (Streich) pitched a heckuva game.”
Streich, a junior, entered the season recovering from a wrist injury. She scattered six singles and recorded seven strikeouts in the circle against the Lady Bulldogs.
Kinzie Waits gave Myrtle a 1-0 lead in the first inning.
In the second, Breanna Smith, made it 2-0 with a triple to right-centerfield. Smith turned around in the bottom of second and pulled off a defensive gem with her diving catch in centerfield that ended a bases-loaded New Albany scoring threat.
“She’s a player. She loves the position and she plays it well,” Gordon said.
Myrtle scored three runs in the third to build a 5-0 lead. Sarah Kate Thompson singled and Emma Mayer doubled and later scored in the inning. Olivia Decanter singled and Streich doubled in the inning.
Streich, who went 3-for-4, singled and scored in the sixth on a fielder’s choice ground ball by Thompson.
The Lady Hawks added four runs in the seventh, three coming off a double by No. 9 batter Jessica Pickens. Streich, Smith and Waits all singled in the inning.
New Albany (3-12) was led by Addison Mayo with two singles. Peyton Henry’s sixth-inning single plated the Lady Bulldogs’ lone run. Pitcher Abby Keller recorded seven strikeouts.
Myrtle has eight Division 2-1A games to play in the next three weeks of the regular season.