SULPHUR — The best way to describe the power that Sulphur freshman catcher Kady Lynch has hit with lately is to let her explain it herself.
“I just try to focus on the hit and just see it come out of the hand,” she said.
Lynch’s focus was evident during Monday’s 8-6 win for Sulphur over Lone Grove. She lined a three-run double that put the Lady Bulldogs ahead early and hit a solo home run that restored the momentum after the Lady Horns had cut what had been a five-run deficit to one run.
Lynch seized the opportunity when she came up to bat with the bases loaded and one out in the home half of the first.
Lining a double to the center-field wall, Lynch’s hit scored Sulphur’s Nos. 1, 2 and 3 batters in the lineup — Payton Szalaj, Makella Mobly and Savannah Ashford, who singled, walked and beat out a misplay of a ground ball for an infield single, respectively — for a 3-0 Sulphur lead.
As for the location of the pitch that Lynch hit, she says “it was right down the pipe. It was good.”
Ashlie Hedemann executed a safety squeeze for a 4-0 Lady Bulldogs lead. On the hit, she placed a bunt single to the right of the pitcher’s circle.
“The biggest thing today is the we came out hot,” Sulphur coach Heath Gilbert said. “We got up (five) to nothing before they could score. So that was big for us.”
Sulphur (10-3 overall, 2-1 District 4A-1) jumped in front 5-0 before Lone Grove scored its first run on Katelynn Cobb’s solo home run in the top of the third.
Lone Grove (8-5, 1-1) out-hit Sulphur 14-11 but struggled to produce enough hits in the clutch.
The Lady Horns left the bases loaded twice and, for the game, stranded 13 base runners.
Lone Grove left the bases loaded in the top of the third — getting only Cobb’s lead-off home run out of that inning.
Shelby Stevenson, Amy Hicks and Cobb attempted to help their team reverse course.
In the fifth, Stevenson, Hicks and Cobb hit three RBI singles — in a span of four batters — to narrow the margin to two runs.
Jordan Johnson later drew a bases-loaded walk to cut what had been a five-run deficit to 6-5.
Lynch provided Sulphur with a little more breathing room after she skied a solo home run over the center-field fence in the home half of the fifth.
In the top of the sixth, Lone Grove — again — had its opportunity to plate runs with runners in scoring position.
Taleigh Nail drew a walk, Stevenson reached on a throwing error and Hicks singled to load the bases with one out.
The Lady Horns didn’t get one run.
Sulphur pitcher Taylor McAlister induced a fielder’s choice off the bat of Adara Finnerty for the second out and Cobb grounded out to Lady Bulldogs second baseman Bekkah Turner to end the threat.
“That was a big inning, and we didn’t take advantage of it,” Lone Grove coach Jimmy Miller said. “We had some momentum and got some good things going, but we couldn’t string it together. Sulphur played really well.”