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Colts End Lady Titans’ Season With First Round District Loss

The Harrodsburg Herald/Jordan Axsom
Junior Ashley Howard came in as the relief pitcher in Mercer’s loss to West Jessamine in the first round of district play on Monday, May 15.

April Ellis
Herald Staff

The Mercer County Lady Titans watched the game and their season slip away early and couldn’t recover in a 13-3 loss to West Jessamine on Monday, May 15, in the first round of district play. West Jessamine took the lead on a home run in the first inning and it was downhill from there. The Lady Titans had beaten the Lady Colts twice in regular season play.

With two outs on the books, the Lady Titans started out strong defensively, but Madison Green, third in the lineup, homered one over left field. It was a precursor to how hot West’s bats would get. Sophomore Ella Davis closed out the top of the first from the rubber with her second strikeout for the inning.

Hannah Beasley, the leadoff hitter, had been hitting well for Mercer during the latter part of the season. Unfortunately, her hit was caught by the left fielder for the first out. KJ Sutton and Kallise Gammon were both able to get on base due to errors and gave Mercer runners at second and third. Ashley Howard was walked and the Lady Titans were in perfect position to score with the bases loaded and only one out. However, the next two batters were out and Mercer ended the inning empty-handed, down 1-0.

Davis walked the first batter but found her groove and her teammates quickly retired three straight batters. Beasley and Petyon Boyd worked the infield for two outs on the fielder’s choice. Senior Madisynn Griffin took care of a fly ball in left field and the Titans were back at bat.

West’s Michaela Tate pitched her best game of the season, and no better time to do it than the post season tournament when a loss ends your season. She took down three straight Mercer batters to end the second inning, with West still in the lead, 1-0.

The top of the third was a big inning for West. With one runner on and one out, they hit a double for their second run of the game. Two more doubles meant two more runs before Ashley Howard came in at relief and threw a strike. West was able to put one more run up on a tag up before Howard closed out the top of the third with a strikeout. Mercer had their work cut out for them with West expanding their lead, 5-0.

Beasley was walked, but West quickly shut Mercer’s offense down with a double play followed by a pop-up.

In the top of the fourth, West did have a few hits, but the Lady Titans were sure gloved and fought to keep the Lady Colts off the boards. Davis scooped up a grounder to get the runner out at first. Sutton earned the second out with a fly to right field. With a runner on third ready to score, Boyd caught a fly at shortstop to give Mercer another chance at bat.

In the bottom of the fourth, Haylee Ransdell’s line drive brought Boyd home and Mercer was on the board, 5-1. Jersey McGinnis was put on base with balls and gave Mercer two runners on, but again, they couldn’t convert runners to runs. A strikeout and a pop out ended Mercer’s chance to close the gap on West. The score remained 5-1 at the end of the fourth.

West had two runners on, but Howard stayed focused and snagged a shot hit back to her for the out at first keeping the runner on third from advancing. Back-to-back doubles scored three more runs for West Jessamine before Mercer could shut down the top of the fifth.

Mercer finally found some momentum. With a full count on her, Beasley persevered and hit a double to left field. It looked like Mercer was going to leave her on base again, with two outs, but Howard hammered a homer over center field for two RBIs. Boyd popped out for the third out, but Mercer had some energy back adding more runs, 8-3.

Their energy carried over to the top of the sixth, retiring three straight batters after only allowing one hit.

Ransdell started off the top of the sixth with a single, but Mercer seemed cursed to abandon their runners on base. McGinnis struck out and then a double play ended the inning. West held on to their 8-3 lead.

The seventh inning was do or die…

For the rest of the story—including full stats—check out this week’s issue of the Harrodsburg Herald. Click here to subscribe.

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