Dodd's homerun highlights Lady Cat victory over Mount Pleasant

By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY, News-Telegram Sports Editor

April 13, 2008 - MOUNT PLEASANT - After scoring a rather pedestrian five runs in the their last three softball games, the Sulphur Springs Lady Cats hit the field running on Friday. And they didn't stop until the game was over.

The Lady Cats scored the most runs by any team in the district this season with a 16-4 victory over Mount Pleasant that was highlighted by Katie Dodd's two-run home run in the third inning.

Dodd finished off a stellar night by going 4-for-4 with a walk, five RBI and three runs scored. She now leads the team with 30 RBI in 28 games and raised her batting average to .438.

Also with multi-hit games were sophomore JaMonica Hall who went 3-for-3 after being moved to the No. 2 spot in the line-up, junior Krista McMahan who had two hits and two RBI, Kelsey Evans who had a double and single, and freshman Kara Tomlinson. Altogether, Sulphur Springs mashed out 16 hits.

The Lady Cats (7-2 in District 11-3A) won their 20th game of the season and wrapped up the runner-up spot in the district. They finish out the regular season on Tuesday when they host Lindale at 6 p.m.

There was little doubt how the game would turn out after the third inning in which the Lady Cats broke out to a 10-0 lead while SSHS sophomore starting pitcher Taylor Clifton had allowed just one hit.

In fact, Sulphur Springs took a 4-0 lead in the top of the first, with their first seven batters reaching safely.

Mac Morgan started the game off by reaching on an error. After Hall singled, Maurie Lewis walked to load the bases. Dodd, Brittani Crawford and McMahan all worked RBI walks off of MP freshman Sarah Sparks, who was replaced by classmate Andrea Jennings. SSHS senior Amanda McGowin then drove in the final run with a sacrifice bunt.

The Lady Cats could have scored more, but McGowin was called out after she got tangled up with the MP second baseman on Tomlinson's ground ball through the infield. It didn't matter.

The Lady Cats added another run in the second inning when Lewis worked her second walk of the game and scored on McMahan's sacrifice fly to make the score 5-0.

Then, in the third, the Lady Cats struck for five more runs. Evans and Tomlinson both singled ahead of Morgan, who walked. Hall then clobbered an opposite-field double that banged off the fence and drove in two runs. Lewis' grounder plated Morgan to make the score 8-0.

Then, Dodd hammered a pitch over the left field fence for her second home run of the season and a 10-0 SSHS advantage.

MP got on the board in the fourth inning on Kaylee Chapman's RBI.

But, the Lady Cats made sure the game ended on the 10-run rule when they exploded for six runs on seven hits in the sixth inning. Evans had an RBI double, while Jenna Davis, Jalie Eppars and McGowin had RBI singles, and Dodd drove home two more runs with a line-drive single to left.

Mount Pleasant scratched together three runs in the bottom of the inning on RBI from Nikki Casteel, who had two hits in the game, Liz Stephens, who is the Lady Tigers' only senior, and Katie Bowen.

Clifton went four innings for the Lady Cats to pick up her 10th win of the season against four losses. She allowed three hits and one run while striking out three and walking none. Kaci Kennedy pitched the final two innings.

SSHS coach David Carrillo played 13 players, and nine of them had at least one RBI and 10 of them scored runs.

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