CASSTOWN — It was a matchup of TRC softball unbeatens Thursday when Miami East hosted Covington.
And the Lady Buccs did all the right things in posing a 7-3 win to improve to 8-1 on the season and 5-0 in the TRC.
“Meg (Rogers) pitched a really good game,” Covington coach Dan Cain said. “We played good defense behind her, did a good job moving runners and had timely hitting. This was a huge win for us.”
Miami East dropped to 8-1 overall and 4-1 in the TRC.
“We have been working on our defense,” Miami East coach Brian Kadel said. “We had a couple mistakes that hurt us. When you are facing a good pitcher and a good team that plays good defense, that’s what happens.”
After two scoreless innings, Covington broke through in the third.
The inning opened with a single by Kamryn Barnes and a walk to Alexa Hitchcock.
After a fielder’s choice, a bunt single loaded the bases.
Nigella Reck reached on an error, but East centerfielder Kalli Teeters threw Hitchcock out at home trying to score.
Mara Newhouse singled to score a second run, but was thrown out at second by Jacqueline Kadel to end the inning.
Covington added two more runs in the fourth, before Miami East ended the inning with a double play.
Taylor Kirker started the inning with a single and Reaghan Lemp put down a perfect bunt down the third-base line.
The throw to first went down the right field line, with Kirker scoring and Lemp ending up on third base.
“That was such a good bunt by Reaghan (Lemp) that I think she would have beat it anyway,” Cain said. “We were able to move some runners with bunts and put pressure on their defense.”
With the bases loaded an on out, pitcher Kyleigh Kirby threw to catcher Braven Mills for an out.
Meg Rogers followed with a sacrifice fly to centerfield.
Erika Gostomsky scored on the play, but Teeters threw to Reagan Howell at third base to get Barnes for a double play to end the innings.
“That’s the thing,” Kadel said. “We make some great plays on defense and then we have plays we don’t make.”
Miami East cut the lead in half in the home fourth, cutting the deficit to 4-2.
Teeters walked and Jacqueline Kadel and Kyleigh Kirby singled to load the bases.
Howell and Kayly Fetters both had fielder’s choice RBIs to bring runs in.
Covington added a run in the fifth on a RB single by Nigella Reck, before East had another double play when shortstop Maddie Maxson caught the ball in the outfield and threw to Mills at the plate to get a runner trying to score.
“I thought we were aggressive on the base paths,” Cain said. “We stayed aggressive even though we had a couple kids thrown out.”
Covington added two more runs in the seventh to make it 7-2.
Karyanne Turner singled and scored when Newhouse’s fly ball fell and Lemp added a RBI single.
Miami East got one run in the seventh before Rogers ended a threat with a strikeout.
Jacqueline Kadel, Kyleigh Kirby and Howell had singles to produce the run.
“Miami East is a good team,” Cain said. “I never felt comfortable until the final out.”
Newhouse had three hits for Covington, while Reck had two hits and two RBIs and Turner had two hits.
Rogers pitched a seven-hitter, striking out 10 and walking three.
Howell was 2-for-4 with two RBIs for East.
Jacqueline Kadel was 2-for-3 and Kyleigh Kirby was 2-for-4.
Kyleigh Kirby allowed 10 hits, while striking out three and walking four.