Lady Rockets use 'em all in 15-0 victory
The Forrest Lady Rockets sent to bat all 23 players in uniform during their 15-0 four-inning, run-rule win over Middle Tennessee Christian School Tuesday night at the Field of Dreams in Chapel Hill.
After the starting nine varsity players tacked nine runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning, Cheatham inserted the remainder of her squad, including 10 recently called up eighth-graders, who continued the offensive onslaught in the victory.
"I want to keep them all anxious to play, I get everybody else confused, including myself, but we brought them up and we want to give them as much action as we can because they may help us down the road, especially with some speed on the base paths," said Forrest head coach Becky Cheatham. "I am just glad that we got an opportunity to get everybody in the game."
Jordan Yelensky walked to lead off the game before MTCS pitcher Holly Bowman recorded a strikeout.
Kate Warrick and FHS starting hurler Samantha King followed with back-to-back doubles, making it a 2-0 ballgame.
Macayla Feller came on to courtesy run for King before Savannah Brothers singled to center field and Emma Stacey came out of the dugout to run for Brothers.
The pair of eighth-graders scooted home on consecutive passed balls, making it 4-0.
Sara Jordan begun rally No. 2 with a base on balls and Lainey Mays beat out a bunt single and Jordan scored on an errant throw, plus Mays alertly followed Jordan to the plate as the Lady Cougars threw the ball away again.
Kiyoko Puca stepped in and laid down a perfect bunt, beating an errant throw to the first base bag that went into the right field corner.
Puca jetted around the bases standing, giving the Lady Rockets an 8-0 lead.
After another Brown strikeout, Amanda Patterson walked and Jasmine Runk singled to center before King knocked in Patterson, making it a 9-0 contest.
"We just told the varsity players when they jump out and do their job, than it gives those younger kids a chance and it makes everybody better," said Cheatham. "It is important for them just to get some game intensity and get on the field with the high school team."
King would pitch three innings of no-hit ball and struck out eight of the 10 MTCS batters she faced in the contest, picking up the win the circle for the Lady Rockets.
Eighth-grader Madison Curtis came on for King in the fourth and gave up one hit and struck out one Lady Cougar.
In the bottom of the second, Piper Elmore led off with a double to left field and Mays beat out another bunt and Elmore scored.
Stacey followed with a small-ball hit that scored Mays and moments later, with Patterson at the plate, Stacey scooted home on a passed ball, making it 12-zip.
Bowman led off the top of the fourth with a base hit before Curtis retired three straight to end the inning.
With one down in the home half of the inning, Feller beat out a bunt before Stacey, Sydney Strasser, and Patterson all drew bases on balls, making it 13-0.
Stacey would score on an error before Strasser came to the plate with the clinching run for the Lady Rockets (9-3, 5-2), who traveled to Eagleville on Wednesday and Community on Thursday.
The Lady Rockets will be battle tested this weekend at the Raptor Classic in Brentwood at Crockett Park where they will be in the same bracket as Class AAA powerhouse Riverdale (15-4).
"We have our hands full this week," said Cheatham. "Now we have come Friday and Saturday some extra people, so we can give some other players a break once in a while."
The Lady Rockets will open up pool play today at 4 p.m. versus CPA and will take on Waverly Central in the second game.
On Saturday, Forrest will play Page in their last pool play game before bracket play commences.