Area Softball

Mustangs use nine run fourth to down Mounties


VEEDERSBURG — Two area softball teams squared off on Thursday as Southmont and Fountain Central both brought winning streaks to Veedersubrg. FC came in winners of four straight while the Mounties had just finished off a dominating Sagamore Conference sweep of Frankfort. The difference in the game came in the fourth inning when Fountain Central put up a nine spot including scoring seven of those nine runs with two outs as they took care of the Mounties 9-3.

Southmont was able to get across a pair of runs in the first inning to lead 2-0, but after that Kacey Kirkpatrick settled in for FC. Kyndale Rice looked very sharp in the first three innings for the Mounties as her changeup struck out four of the first six hitters she faced. The prolific Mustang offense did what good teams do however and adjusted.

Kearney Foxworthy-Dejournett singled to begin the fourth and that resulted in four straight hits for the Mustangs. Kirkpatrick doubled, and Olivia Jones and Kyra Kiger both singled. It was 2-2 as Rice got the next two outs. A two-RBI singles by Braelyn Brooker gave FC the lead and the flood gated were open. The nine-run inning was all Fountain Central (7-5) needed as Kirkpatrick was locked in on the mound and FC secured its fifth straight win.

“You have to give credit to Rice because she had us off balance to begin the game,” Mustang coach Ric Walke said. “Her changeup ate us up the first time through the order. We talked about it in the dug out and started making contact and putting the ball in play and just made things happen. We really took advantage of our team speed which is something that I really like about this team. We were flat after such a big sweep last night over Seeger, but for our girls to fight back, that shows how competitive this group of girls is.”

Fountain Central’s offense had four different girls record two hits. Kearney went 2-4 with two RBI’s, Kirkpatrick 2-4 with three run driven in, Olivia Jones 2-3, and Lilly Bennett 2-3. Brooker and Kiger each had one hit. In the circle Kirkpatrick continued her strong season. The senior struck out 13 Mounties and gave up just one earned run and walked just one while surrendering seven hits in 6.2 innings. There was a small scare that came over the Mustangs as with one out left to get, Kirkpatrick stepped wrong with her plant foot off the mound and was taken out of the game for precautionary reasons by Walke. Bennett came in to record the final out of the ball game.

“I’m pretty sure Kacey is averaging 10 strikeouts per start,” Walke said of his senior in the circle. “Southmont has a talented lineup and they’re well coached. I’ve went to Dan (Taylor) for hitting advice plenty of times and you look at players like (Jenna) Grino and (Anna) Stokes at the top of their lineup. Grino was a home run short of the cycle. This is a game that I love getting up for every year and I enjoy it and I know our girls do to getting to play against a good team like that.”

Southmont (3-5) did have a big night from Jenna Grino as Walke mentioned. She went 3-4 with a double and triple in her first two at-bats. Anna Stokes went 2-4 with a double Catie Himes and Jayden Dagley each had a single for the Mounties in the loss. Rice on the mound went four innings and did strike out six while only walking one. She gave up 10 hits and all nine runs were earned. Freshman Sammie Crosby came in to throw the final two innings for the Mounties and only gave up a walk in an otherwise perfect relief outing.

“Fountain Central is really good softball team with some really great players,” Southmont coach Dan Taylor said. “Kyndale was near perfect in those first three innings and in the fourth they figured out a way to get some hits off of a pitcher who was rolling. They just wouldn’t let us get that third and final out that we needed to stop the bleeding. You also have to give a ton of credit to Kacey Kirkpatrick who pitched fantastic. I was proud of our girls for how we started the game and was able to score some early runs. We had runners on in six of the seven innings, just weren’t about to get that timely hit that we needed.”

Southmont now turns it’s attention to its first county matchup of the season when they will host the North Montgomery Chargers. Taylor previewed the county rivalry.

“I am glad that when we play North that I don’t have to get the girls motivated for this game Taylor said. “They compete against these girls in other sports and so they know those girls and want to win. North is a team that’s gotten better the last several years and of course they have a talented player in Piper Ramey who we’ll have to be ready for.”

Fountain Central will also be in action on Saturday when they take their five-game winning streak on the road to Lafayette Jefferson. North Montgomery and Southmont are slated for a 10 am first pitch.