After the way Monday’s game ended against Ringgold, the Calhoun Lady Jackets were eager to get back on the field again and put the memory of that one in the rearview mirror.
Calhoun did just that on Wednesday against rival Sonoraville as they made amends for the tough 4-2 loss to the Lady Tigers with a convincing 12-1 victory in six innings over their Gordon County rivals.
The Lady Jackets (5-3, 1-1) scored seven runs over the first three innings and then put the game away with a five-run sixth.
Calhoun coach Diane Smith said her team was more than ready to play another game after the way Monday’s contest at home against Ringgold ended. (The Lady Jackets lost a 2-1 lead in the seventh.)
“The girls wanted this win badly,” said Smith. “I think the way that game ended was kind of a wake-up call for us. We had a great practice yesterday, and they weren’t happy about losing so they came out and did something about it today.”
The Lady Jackets had production up and down the lineup, but Emily Mitchell led the way with two hits and three RBIs. She also earned the win in the circle, going four innings and allowing just one run on five hits while striking out five.
Also having big days at the plate for Calhoun was Ashlyn Barnes with three hits and three runs scored, Jana Johns and Emily Weatherman with two hits and an RBI apiece, Allie Jones with three hits and a run scored and Chloe Rice with two hits and two RBIs. Taylor Kelly and Madison Green also drove in a run apiece, and Ryan Brzozoski scored two runs.
Smith said her team put into practice what they’ve been working on after having trouble putting the ball in play in the last several games.
“Today, we got runners on, moved them up and got them in early in the game,” said Smith. “That’s what we’ve worked on a lot recently. You’ve got to put the ball in play and try to hit hard line drives and put balls on the ground. We want to make the defense handle it.”
Abby Connally was the lone player for Sonoraville (5-7, 2-2) with two hits. Thaley Jackson added a hit and an RBI, and Kolbey Smith and Baylee Blaylock had a hit apiece.
For Calhoun, pitcher Kinsey Liscio came on to work the final two innings of hitless relief in the circle as she struck out three after Mitchell’s start.
Smith said she would continue to go with using her two ace pitchers (Mitchell and Liscio) and two catchers (Rice and Raleigh Fitch) as long as the strategy worked.
“I met with my pitchers and catchers, and they said they like it when they split time in games,” said Smith. “That way all four get to be a part of each game, and they’re more into it and ready because they know they’re going to be in there. As long as it works, that’s what we’ll continue to do.”
Smith said that getting every region win is important because of seeding for the region tournament, and her team would go into every game with that mindset.
“We want to win the region and go into the State Tournament as the No. 1 seed,” said Smith. “Every region contest is important because if you win them, it sets you up better to accomplish those goals. We’re not going to take anyone lightly. We’re going to try to beat them all and look at it the same way.”
For the Lady Phoenix the game was the second against a local rival in two days. They defeated Gordon Central on Tuesday with a late rally for a 3-2 win.
Calhoun is back home against Adairsville on Thursday; Sonoraville is on the road at Coahulla Creek.