DICKSON — No motivation was needed for Madill right-hander Jacy Wallace on Tuesday.
Yielding five walks in three innings in 100-degree heat in the Lady Wildcats’ season opener against Dickson was all the fuel that Wallace needed.
Wallace overpowered the Lady Comets, at times, and yielded just three walks to seven strikeouts in seven innings of work in an 8-1 Lady Wildcats victory.
“The first time we played them, I really pitched bad and walked too many people, and that gave me some motivation,” she said.
The victory indicated to Madill coach Randy Rushing how far his Lady Wildcats have come since opening day (Aug. 8) when they lost 11-1 to the same Lady Comets.
“We are more seasoned,” he said. “(Wallace) has had some decent games but we haven’t played (defense) behind her. Today, we played good defense behind her, and it makes a whole lot of difference.”
Wallace admitted that she has had some struggles in the first inning of games this season.
Dickson tagged her for two hits in the first inning to get ahead 1-0.
Bryttni Gardner clubbed a lead-off double into left field and later scored the Lady Comets’ lone run.
Dickson was unable to build off the fast start and much of it was due to Madill’s defense as well as the pitching of Wallace, who allowed just three hits over the game’s final six innings.
So, how did Wallace manage to not the let run get to her head? She told herself to remain calm.
“I felt it was a lot better than last time,” she said. “My coaches said that was the best game that I had pitched this season.”
Dickson led 1-0 until the third.
Lady Comets pitcher Shanna McKown retired two consecutive batters after Kassy Kemp led off with a single.
Dickson couldn’t finish the inning unscathed.
Madill tallied six runs with two outs and capitalized on a few defensive errors by Dickson.
Macy Shirley had a big stick for the Lady Wildcats on Tuesday. She doubled in the big third inning for Madill. In the sixth, she drove in Bailey Gammill and Madison Jowers with a double.
Shirley finished 2 for 4. Rylee Ruff contributed two hits in three at-bats.