6-Sigma, Peebles seize victories

By Marvin Birchfield
STAR STAFF
mbirchfield@starhq.com

   The 6-Sigma girls softball team managed to grab a nice lead to start the contest with Big John's Closeout, as they were successful with a 14-11 victory on Saturday.
   A 6-1 advantage after the first frame was enough of a lead to hold off a relentless Big John's team, which kept the game close throughout.
   "I thought getting the lead in the first inning was a big advantage, and the innings in which we didn't hit the ball well we played good defense," said 6-Sigma manager Rhonda McKinney.
   Big John's captured a run in the top of the first, when a fielder's choice from Kourtney Byers drove-in Rachael Reynolds.
   6-Sigma came back to answer by scoring six-runs with the first two coming off a single from Madison McKinney, which brought home Kristen Powell and Brittany Jenkins.
   Two runs by Big John's were added in the top of the second, when Miriah Pietrowski smacked a double to bring home Haley Verran, along with a ground-out from Whitney Murray to bring in Pietrowski.
   It was a 7-3 advantage for 6-Sigma after two frames, as it produced a run in the bottom of the second when Jenkins made it home after a fly-out by Kendra Good.
   Big John's tied the contest in the top of the third, when Pietrowski nailed a shot inside the right-field line to drive in Rebecca Marrow and Byers.
   6-Sigma pulled ahead by five runs in the bottom of the third, after walks produced the first three scores.
   An infield single by McKinney scored Chelsey Wagner and Powell to give 6-Sigma a 12-7 advantage after three frames.
   "One thing about these girls is that they step up, for when the going gets tough then they get tougher," said McKinney.
   The lead was cut to within two runs after the top of the fourth, when Marrow crushed a triple to left field, which brought in Murray, Brittany Stines and Jenkins.
   Two runs crossed the plate in the bottom of the fourth for 6-Sigma, after a walk with bases loaded and a batter who was hit by the pitch scored Chelsey Melber and Tara Kauffield.
   Big John's only managed to capture one run in the top of the fifth, when a double by Pietrowski drove-in Verran.
   "After coming off of four straight losses, I was very pleased with how these girls played today," McKinney.
   Peebles 13
   EPD 4
   It was 11 runs that scored in the first two inning, which enabled Peebles to defeat Elizabethton Police Department in a 13-4 final.
   "We had some girls come along to hit the ball today, and then we had the ones that normally hit do the same thing," said Peebles manager Jeff Bunten.
   Walks contributed to the first three runs which crossed home plate for the EPD, as April Davis, Ashley Price and Cassie Johnson all scored.
   A double by Brittany Eggers produced the first runs for Peebles, with Chelsey Bowling and McKenzie Eggers coming home.
   With a 6-3 lead in the first inning, Peebles was able to avoid a run from scoring in the top of the second, when the defense stepped up to deny a run after committing three straight walks.
   "We made the plays when we needed them. We pulled off a couple of good double plays, and hind-catcher made several good throws to get an out," said Bunten.
   Peebles added five more run in the bottom of the second to take a 11-3 advantage, when Brittany Crabtree crushed a double to drive in Rikki Pritchard and Taylor Kyte.
   Walks brought home Brittany Sorrell for the EPD in the top of the third, but it was the only score from them, after a total of six walks were committed.
   A triple from Bowling in the bottom of the third scored Samantha Modina, and a shot from McKenzie Eggers scored the final run of the contest with Bowling crossing home plate.
   With two runners on base in the last frame, Peebles defense captured the victory with a throw to home for the final out.
   "I'm very much pleased with how we played today, and we need to just keep on playing like this year round and we'll be all right," said Bunten.