by Hunter Dawkins, Publisher

At the renovated Dr. Marlin Ladner Softball Field in Long Beach Friday night, the Lady Bearcats dominated the visiting St. Patrick Lady Irish 12-2 for their second victory of the year.  With a combination 0f 14 hits, 10 runs batted in (RBIs) and 12 runs scored, Long Beach secured the non-region win.

“The bats came around; made a few errors, but that was the biggest thing we kept our head up and continued playing the game,” said Long Beach Head Softball Coach Rebecca Tillman.  “We have a lot of girls with very little experience so we’re kind of building from the ground up in a lot of aspects in the game.”

Beginning the game, a pitching duel looked imminent with both sides going three-and-out from the mound.  Long Beach opened this up in the bottom of the second inning with Lady Bearcat Daylin Johnson hitting an RBI double to score the first run followed by Pitcher Katelyn Schroeder helping herself out with an RBI-infield single.

The second inning ended with Long Beach’s Chloe Fox stealing home, but Hailey Dixon knocking the ball into a double play and a 3-0 lead. The Lady Bearcats would have the lead for the rest of the game.

After Johnson hit a two run-double in the bottom of the third inning, the Lady Bearcats committed two errors in the bottom of the fourth to allow two runs to score.

Momentum began drifting in the top of the fourth, but Long Beach Senior Jillian Powell singled with two outs bringing home Dixon on a St. Patrick error, which opened up the flood gates.  Four more runs scored and the Lady Bearcats had a 10-2 lead in the fifth inning.

Schroeder stayed on the mound, finishing what she started allowing only one hit, two walks, and six strikeouts.

Long Beach’s Bailee Schmitt started things off right in the bottom of the fifth with a line-drive single, followed by Dixon reaching on an error, and Powell laying down a bunt single to reach.

The game ended in the next at bat with a two-RBI single from Lady Bearcat Sarah Wilson and Long Beach winning on a 12-2 mercy rule after 5 innings.

Schroeder; a William Carey signee, earned the victory and helped improve the Long Beach record to 2-8-1.

Powell and catcher Marissa Allen each had three hits for the Lady Bearcats while Johnson had three RBIs off two doubles.  Dixon and Jordon Tillman both scored two runs for Long Beach.

The next game is scheduled for Tuesday, March 22 with the Lady Bearcats hosting the Pearl River Central Lady Blue Devils in their first 2022 district matchup at 6:30pm.