Softball team gets key win over Reagan

Published 9:32 am Thursday, May 2, 2019

Davie’s varsity softball team rode the agony/ecstasy/agony/ecstasy roller coaster last week.

The War Eagles lost 6-5 in nine innings to East Forsyth. They won 12-2 over North Forsyth. They lost 5-2 to East Surry. And, playing a fourth game in three days, they won 5-1 over Reagan.

The nine-inning loss at East Forsyth on April 23 felt too familiar  to Davie, which lost 7-2 to West Forsyth after it was 2-2 in the sixth and 4-2 to East in the first meeting after it was 2-2 in the fifth.

But the War Eagles had nothing to be ashamed about with this effort. After hitting a meager .211 (51 for 241) across 10 games, they hit .315 in this one against Kierston Deal, a strong freshman arm who went all nine innings and finished with 10 strikeouts.

In the third, Karley Queen tripled, Rachel Bostic singled and Sydney Wyatt doubled as Davie took a 2-0 lead. East bombed a three-run homer in its half of the third on the way to a 4-2 lead.

Davie refused to die in the seventh, even after Deal had retired seven in a row. Aisulu Ball reached on an error, Emma Patterson bunted for a hit and Deal plunked London Dirks to load the bases for Queen, who tied it with a two-run single. Deal left the bases loaded to keep it 4-4.

What a tremendous battle it was. In the eighth, Desiree Lewis singled, advanced on Ball’s sac bunt and Patterson’s bunt hit and scored when Dirks’ grounder was errored. Davie had a 5-4 lead.

The first two Eagles in the bottom of the eighth went down, but East used a walk, double and single to force another tie at 5.

In the top of the ninth, Caitlyn Sechrist’s one-out double did not amount to anything, and in the bottom of the ninth, East cashed in a leadoff walk. A sac bunt was followed by a game-winning single on an 0-2 pitch.

Davie outhit (12-9) a team that improved to 15-2. Both East losses have come from first-place West Forsyth. Davie got multiple hits from Patterson (3-5), Queen (2-5), Wyatt (2-5) and Lewis (2-4). It was Davie’s most hits in 11 games and matched a season high.

“It didn’t go our way (at the end), but we could have folded early when they went up 4-2,” coach Dawn Lowery said. “I’m very proud of our fight and I’m looking forward to playing them again (this week in the CPC Tournament).”

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Davie split a home doubleheader on April 24, rolling 12-2 over North Forsyth and falling 5-2 to East Surry. Davie hasn’t managed back-to-back wins since the first two games of the year. It was Senior Night for Bostic, Lewis, Sydney Smith and Wyatt.

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Everybody felt good again when Davie pulled away, 5-1, in a key CPC game at Reagan on April 25. Had Davie lost, it would have finished in a third-place tie with Reagan and a coin toss would have determined the third/fourth seeds for the tournament.

Instead, Wyatt, Bostic and Sechrist all went 2 for 3 and Bostic pitched a complete-game four-hitter as Davie seized third at 4-4. West Forsyth (8-0) and East Forsyth (6-2) finished 1-2.

Sechrist led off the third with a single. Two outs later, Patterson doubled to give Davie a 1-0 lead. But it stayed that way through the fifth.

“We had some balls hit right to their players,” Lowery said. “We knew if we kept making good contact something would fall and get us going.”

The sixth was the big inning that Davie was looking for. Dirks started it by lining a single up the middle.

“London is a line-drive hitter,” Lowery said of the freshman. “She’s got really quick hands. She’s going to be somebody to talk about over the next three years.”

After Queen put down a sac bunt, Wyatt legged out an infield hit.

“Sydney holds herself to very high standards, and when she doesn’t meet those, she’s not happy,” Lowery said. “She hustled down the line. That’s just pure heart.”

Bostic singled, Lewis reached on an error when her grounder deflected off the pitcher and Sechrist capped the three-run rally with a single. Davie had a 4-0 lead.

It was a solid win over a team that lost 6-5 to Davie on April 2. The night before, Reagan lost 2-1 to West Forsyth.

After capturing the CPC regular-season title in 2018, the War Eagles (9-11 overall) have dropped off in 2019, finishing third and trying to avoid their first losing season since 2012. But they closed the regular season on a high note and everybody has a clean slate now.

“I’m real pleased with our defense,” Lowery said. “We’ve fixed a few of the problems we had early on. We’re playing more confidently on defense. If we can make that happen on offense, too, I think we’ll be in good shape (this) week.”

Notes: Davie is 20-0 all time against Reagan. … Bostic pitched her eighth complete game in 18 starts. She has logged 101.2 innings. … Shea Woody is playing out of her mind at shortstop. “Shea has made some plays up the middle that I haven’t seen made in high school in a long time,” Lowery said. “She’s catching balls up the middle, making catches over her shoulder and backhanding. I mean she is absolutely on fire defensively.” … Patterson, a junior, is hitting .363, or 103 points over Davie’s average. Bostic is next at .326.