By Matt Welch
Times West Virginian
PLEASANT VALLEY —
Thunder clouds weren’t the only thing looming over the East Fairmont (6-6) softball team Monday when the Lady Bees hosed No. 7 Lincoln. Joining the ominous clouds was a sense of urgency for energy that never showed up as Lincoln was able to shut out East Fairmont, 4-0.
It wasn’t the fact that Lincoln freshman pitcher Hope Bray pitched a five-hit shutout, striking out eight batters along the way, that had East Fairmont coach John Postlewait searching for words. It wasn’t Lincoln’s Emily Knight’s three RBI. And it wasn’t even the nine hits that East pitcher Tori Postlewait surrendered from the circle. Instead, it was the lack of energy that the Lady Bees brought to Monday’s contest that concerned the coach.
“We had a few girls who hit the ball today, but all in all we didn’t show up to play today,” the coach said after the loss. “We talk about effort every day and energy, and we didn’t bring it today. That’s on me. We’re going to figure it out and get it out of them one way or the other.”
The No. 7-ranked Cougars kicked things off in the second inning when Santana Creamer knocked a one-out double into the right-centerfield gap, which Morgan Brooks followed up with a single.
With two ducks on the pond, Knight hit a scorcher between Leeanna Downey and Sydney Postlewait, and sent the ball into leftfield, scoring two runs in the process.
Postlewait, who pitched all seven innings, would get out of the jam, though, forcing two ground balls to end the inning.
Despite a slim deficit, the Lady Bees were never able to muster anything up offensively, not once putting together a multi-hit inning.
“We need to hit the ball,” Postlewait, who had one of the Bees’ five hits in the game, said. “It’s something we struggled with and we need to be ready to play every day.”
The Bees threatened to score in the fourth inning, though, after Olivia Conaway beat out an infield single with one out, advancing to second after Brooklyn Nuzum drew a walk.
Bray, though, would end the inning with two strikeouts to bring the inning to a close and only allow just one hit the remainder of the game, sending her team home with a 4-0 victory.
Conaway would finish 2-for-3 in the game while leadoff hitter Hannah Ferrell also added two hits and Nuzum drew two walks.
Moving forward, East will look to eliminate this game from the minds and get things back on track, Postlewait added, saying the team needs to just play calm and to its abilities.
“It’s just like batting practice,” she said. “We need to get the energy back up and don’t over-think too much.”
The Lady Bees don’t have long to think about the loss as they will travel to play Lewis County today at 4:30 p.m.
North Marion routs BU, 12-2
No. 9 North Marion continued its solid play, downing Buckhannon-Upshur on the road, 12-2.
Seven Huskies picked up hits and six drove in runs. Amanda Sigley recorded a single and a triple with an RBI, while Shasta Pyles and Paige Efaw each had a single and a double with an RBI. Taylor Wells, Morgan Clyde and Chey Steen each added hits and two RBI apiece while Shelby King contributed a hit.
Chelsi Latocha picked up the win again in the circle, pitching all 5.0 innings, only allowing four hits.
North (7-0) is back in action today as the Huskies host RCB at 5 p.m.
Fairmont Senior falls to Lewis, 20-6
Fairmont Senior (0-7) took a step in the positive direction despite falling to Lewis County, 20-6, Monday night.
The Lady Polar Bears were able to play their first complete game of the season, playing all 7.0 innings in the loss, something coach Josh Leep said was a positive takeaway from the game.
Brooklyn Nuzum went 2-for-4 and scored three runs, while Lexie Seremetis went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a stolen base.
They’ll be back in action today as they travel to play Bridgeport at 4:30 p.m.
Email Matt Welch at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow on Twitter @MattWelch_TWV.