Lady Pirates’ Bottom Seven Rally Forces Salem to Share
The Charlestown Lady Pirate Softball team (18-4 & 7-2 MSC) began Tuesday evening’s showdown with conference leader Salem eight days ago. The game rain delayed in the bottom of the fourth last Monday, with the difference being a Lady Lion solo home run in the third. Eight days the weight of the match-up loomed, especially with the Lady Pirates who have experienced the recent Softball and Basketball showdowns between the two groups of competitors. Charlestown and Salem resumed the game Tuesday evening, the Lady Lions with a 1-0 lead and two away in the bottom of the fourth for the Lady Pirates. Charlestown continued to make adjustments for Salem’s pitcher, Brooke Miller; who continued to deliver a hard-to-hit-solid ball. Two singles and two errors in the top of the fifth allowed Salem to balloon its lead to 4-0 heading into the fifth inning. Cline doubled in the sixth, but Charlestown was unable to plate any runs through six complete; however Lady Pirate Pitcher Carly Price zeroed in on what was working and held Salem at bay in the sixth and seventh. Price pitched the complete game, striking out five and walking one Lady Lion. The bottom of the seventh, seemingly the Lady Pirates’ last chance at a share of the 2015 softball conference title was real; but it wasn’t written on anyone’s face. Senior Kaitlynn Henning led off with a single, then Sophomore Mackenzie Smith (who finished the game four for four at the plate) singled to move Henning into scoring position at third. Then it was the flip of a switch…. somewhere in the Charlestown dug-out. Junior Leah Sherrill singled and scored Henning to cut the lead to three with two on base and no outs. Juniors Carly Price and Lexi Logsdon hit back-to-back stand-up triples to plate three more runs and tie the score at four. Logsdon, representing the winning run on third, awaited to be plated for the walk-off victory. Salem (15-8 & 7-2 MSC) elected to make a pitching change (Kilburn); but it wasn’t enough to stop the Lady Pirate momentum. Two batters later, with one away, Sophomore Kendall Cline smacked a shot to third base scoring Logsdon for the win. Logsdon got a great jump off third and slid under the tag at home for one of the most aggressive steals of her career. Charlestown’s 5-4 win forced Salem to share the Softball Conference Championship, the Lady Pirates second since 2012 and fifth all time (1996, 1997, & 1998). Mackenzie Smith was named the Coyle Chevy, Buick, GMC and Coyle Nissan Player of the Game by CPPSB. Charlestown has won fourteen straight when it visits Henryville (4:30 pm first pitch) on Wednesday. Henryville is ranked third in 2A ball with a record of 24-3; which promises to be a good competitive game in advance of next week’s Sectional. The Lady Pirates will also host Southwestern Thursday night and Brown County on Friday night for Senior Night and recognition of retiring coach Zollman.