Hendrix fans 11 in softball win
Published 9:16 am Thursday, March 10, 2022
By Brian Pitts
The Davie varsity softball team came out for the first game of the season and drove straight into a Mooresville wall. The War Eagles made up for it by dispatching East Surry.
Davie had nothing to cheer about in the opener against visiting Mooresville on Feb. 28, losing 10-0 in six innings. Mooresville had twice as many hits as Davie, blasted two home runs and played flawless defense.
The Blue Devils went 15-2 in 2021 and they might be an elite team again. After visiting Davie, they defeated two more opponents, and their running score through three games is 22-3.
Davie’s four hits came from Melanie Gobble (1 for 3), Sydney Dirks (1-2, walk), London Dirks (1-3) and Leah Grimes (1-2, walk).
Davie 3, E. Surry 0
Davie rebounded nicely against visiting East Surry on March 2. The biggest reasons were pitcher Addie Hendrix and Gobble, who smacked a two-run double as Davie overcame a college-bound pitcher.
“Their pitcher is good,” assistant coach Fred Smith said. “She’s going to Presbyterian.”
Despite being a sophomore, Hendrix was masterful in the circle. She went the distance, pitched a two-hitter, walked two and struck out 11.
“Addie really stepped up for us,” interim head coach Debbie Evans said. “I can’t remember the last time we had a complete-game shutout. She was hitting her spots and keeping the batters offbalance. Our defense played well behind her.”
With two outs in the first, Hendrix got a strikeout with the bases loaded. She retired 13 straight between the first and fifth innings. She retired the last five while firing 56 strikes in 80 pitches.
It was Davie’s first shutout since 15-0 at Reynolds on April 12, 2018. Hendrix turned in the first seven-inning shutout by a Davie pitcher since Olivia Boger’s three-hitter in an 8-0 win over North Davidson in the CPC Tournament final on May 5, 2017.
She outdueled Riley Pennington, who went the distance and fanned 10 for East.
“Her stuff was working,” Smith said of Hendrix. “She had a drop curve – and drop balls in general – and had them completely offbalance. She was strong all night.”
Davie took a quick 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Summer Simpson doubled, S. Dirks singled and then L. Dirks doubled. In the second, McKenzie Mixon doubled. Two walks later, Gobble’s double pushed the lead to 3-0.
“The bottom of the lineup helped us,” Smith said. “McKenzie had a big hit, a gap double. Melanie made something happen. London hit one down the line.”
The defensive play of the game came with two on in the sixth. Enter left fielder Bailey Snow.
“The girl turned on a changeup and it looked like it was down in the gap,” Smith said. “I thought there’s no way anybody is getting to it. The runner on second took off. Somehow, Bailey ran it down and then threw it to second to double them up. That was a game-changer.”
Then Simpson flashed her leather at second base.
“Right after (Snow’s catch), a line drive was hit,” Smith said. “Summer laid out for it, knocked it down and threw it from her belly to get the final out.”
Notes: Getting two hits and a walk from S. Dirks, Davie outhit East 6-2. … Smith gave two thumbs up to outfielders Snow, Gobble and Carleigh Croom. “Our outfield has been lights out,” he said. “Even against Mooresville, they made some crazy catches. (Against East) Melanie made a big catch. She tracked one down deep.” … Davie lost a back-and-forth, 3-2 nonconference game at Forbush on March 4. Davie outhit the Falcons 7-6, but its 2-1 lead was turned into a 3-2 deficit in the fourth, and neither team scored in the last three innings. … Hendrix pitched another complete game. … Gobble and Ashley Bledsoe had two hits each. Grimes reached three times on hit by pitches.