Too many free bases cost WSN girls in loss to McKenzie

Published 3:55 pm Wednesday, April 25, 2007

By BY BRUCE HIXON – sports editor
They were able to elude the mercy rule not once, but twice. In the end, the W.S. Neal Lady Blue Eagles softball team was unable to elude the end result Monday when they dropped a 15-9 decision at home to the McKenzie Lady Tigers.
McKenzie, which beat the Lady Blue Eagles 16-6 last week, had just five hits. However, the Lady Tigers made up for their lack of hits with free passes. McKenzie received 14 walks and five hit batters. W.S. Neal (4-11) also committed 10 errors on defense.
McKenzie built a 9-0 lead during its first three at-bats on just two hits, but the Lady Tigers were hardly flawless in other parts of its game. McKenzie committed seven errors.
The first of those miscues factored into W.S. Neal's first three runs in the bottom of the third. Heather Elliott walked and Katie Elliott reached on an outfield error. Both scored on a two-run double by April Jackson, who later scored on a wild pitch.
McKenzie got a pair of runs in the top of the fourth that extended its lead to 11-3 although the Lady Blue Eagles picked up an unearned run in the bottom half of the inning.
Three runs by the Lady Tigers in the top of the fifth gave McKenzie a 14-4 lead and a chance to close out the game early, but W.S. Neal stayed
alive when Jennie Crawford walked and scored on a two-out wild pitch that made it 14-5.
McKenzie also missed a chance to end the game on the ten-run rule in the sixth after it scored a run and upped the lead to 15-5. The Lady Blue Eagles came back in the bottom half of inning with a four-run rally that narrowed the gap to 15-9. The key blow came when Jackson drove in a pair of runs with a single and then circled the bases after her hit was misplayed in the outfield.
W.S. Neal, which played at Red Level Tuesday, is off until Monday when it hosts Escambia County at 4 p.m. in the regular season finale.
At W.S. Neal
McKenzie 441 231 0 – 15 5 7
W.S. Neal 003 114 0 – 9 4 10

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