Whaley, Tigerettes bash Page 19-2

Friday, March 16, 2012
Austyn Whaley rounds third base and gives the low five to head coach Holly Cook on her way to the dish after a grand slam home run in the fourth inning. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

After a season opening 2-0 loss at Columbia Central on Monday, the Marshall County Tigerettes bounced back with a vengeance, bashing District 12-AA rival Page 19-2 in Rudderville Tuesday afternoon.

MCHS head coach Holly Cook said after the game, "We had a little slump yesterday, but I told them I was glad they got that out of their system because of the big district game today. We came out with bats blazing and I am real excited about that."

MCHS banged out 18 hits versus the Lady Patriots, led by Austyn Whaley, who went 5-5 with eight RBIs.

"What can you say about that," said Cook. "I can't remember a hitting performance I've seen like that in a while. I am proud of her, she has worked hard for it, and I hope we can build on that for the rest of the season."

The Tigerette junior third sacker walloped two home runs, including a grand slam, smashed two doubles, a single, and scored five times.

"She was throwing me the right pitches and I wanted to jump on them early and get that first pitch," said Whaley. "I have been struggling lately on getting two strikes on me and fouling off junk and not getting good pitches to hit hard like I did tonight."

Asked if she was going to wash any of her gear after the big performance, Whaley laughed and said, "I am kind of superstitious, so I will have to do everything I did today, exactly the same."

Freshman Ashton Watkins had a huge day in her second varsity start with a perfect 4-4 performance at the plate in which the second baseman drove home two runs and scored twice.

Freshman Ashton Watkins slams the first of her four hits in four at bats in the Tigerettes 19-2 win at Page on Tuesday.

Watkins also came up with a gold glove play in the dirt in the bottom of the fourth inning when she dove to her left to stop a ball destined for right field, and came up throwing to nail Carly Meek at first base.

"I'll tell you, defense has not been our issue, we have a heck of a defensive team," said Cook. "We have just to get it in our mind that we are hitters and show up every game to hit. We didn't do that yesterday, but we sure did today."

Senior Kalie Hobbs went the distance for the win and had a nice day at the dish, going 1-3 with three RBIs.

In the circle, Hobbs tossed a solid game, surrendering two earned runs on two hits, while walking three, and striking out nine.

The Tigerettes busted out early, scoring four runs in the first inning to take control early.

Page came up with an unearned run in the bottom of the second, but MCHS matched it in the third inning on a Whaley RBI double.

An RBI double by Page pitcher Onah Schreffler drove home Abby Meek to make it a 5-2 ballgame in the home half of third, before the Tigerettes busted the contest wide open with seven runs in the top of the fourth to make it a 12-2 ballgame.

MCHS sent eleven batters to the dish in the frame with the big blow coming from Whaley, who busted the grand slam over the center field fence.

Hobbs set down the Lady Patriots 1-2-3 in the home half of the fourth.

Once again, seven was the lucky number for the Tigerettes in the fifth inning with Whaley belting an opposite field three-run dinger, Hobbs drove home two runs with a liner to right, and Mary Medley drove home two more runs with a bases jammed single to center.

Hobbs took the 19-2 lead to the bottom of the fifth and retired Page in order to complete the run-rule win.