Philipsburg-Osceola staked Maggie Peck to a 6-0 lead in the first inning and cruised to an 11-3 win over Bellefonte on Monday.
“We dug ourselves a big hole and you can’t expect to climb out of it easily against a quality team like Philipsburg,” Lady Red Raider coach Fred Caldwell.
Peck turned over the first shovel full of dirt when she drilled a solo homer to straightaway left field to start the Mountie half of the first inning. P-O only had one other hit in the inning, an RBI single by McKenzie Burge. The rest of the runs scored as a result of a hit batter, an error, a fielder’s choice and two walks as Lady Raider starter Tara Baney ran into trouble.
“Maggie leading off with a homer sort of set the tone for that inning,” P-O coach Jim Gonder said.
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Bellefonte scored all of its runs in the second on singles by Sara Menna, Alexis Wetzler and Stevie Confer, plus a P-O error.
The Lady Mounties added a solo run in the second when Megan Bainey doubled, moved to third on a passed ball and scored on Burge’s infield out.
In the third, P-O pushed its lead to 9-3 on singles by Abby Showers and Chelsey Henry, a sacrifice fly by Jayde Burge and Hannah Thompson’s RBI groundout.
In the fourth, a single by Burge preceded a homer to left by Haylee Hayward to account for the final runs of the game. Baney took the loss, giving up five hits, walking two and striking out one.
Peck finished the day allowing seven hits, striking out four and walking none.
“She did a great job,” Caldwell said of Peck. “Her changeup was really effective toward the end. Tara had a rough first inning for us but then I thought Rachel Bernier came in and did a great job.”
“It’s tough to throw in this cold weather,” Gonder said. “I don’t think any pitcher is at the top of her game in this kind of weather.”
For P-O, Chelsey Henry and Burge had two hits apiece to lead the offense.
“Chelsey Henry is starting to heat up and when she does that we’re solid,” Gonder added. “And with Maggie and Megan (Bainey) at the top of the order, we have speed. They can both run like deer.
“I thought our defense played pretty well. They’re starting to look more comfortable out there.”
P-O is back in action Tuesday when it entertains Penns Valley, while Bellefonte is idle until Thursday when it’s home against Tyrone.