Stephanie Preston was able to draw a walk in the bottom of the second for the Lady Colts but was left stranded. West had two more batters reach base in the fourth on a walk and a hit-by-pitch but failed to drive them in.
“I felt like we came out pretty flat in the beginning. We play a little bit uptight when we play East. I know it’s a big rivalry,” Baker said. “I thought we played a little tight in the first few innings.”
Underwood scored for a second time in the top of the fifth. She was on second base when Davis hit a home run over the center-field wall to make it a 5-0 game. Sarah Rainwater followed with her first career home run, a solo shot to center to put East up by six.
“The past two days, all we’ve done is just take batting practice,” East Jessamine coach Chris Slone said.
East was in a bit of a hitting slump prior to last Thursday’s win. In fact, the Lady Jags scored four or fewer runs in 10 of the first 14 games this season.
“We have not been putting up runs; batting averages are horrendous; it’s just horrible,” Slone said. These past two days, we’ve worked two hours each day on hitting. Fast pitch, slow pitch, everything.”
The back-to-back home runs ended Taylor Slone’s day on the rubber, and she was replaced by Sammie Hendrix, who worked out of a jam with runners on second and third.
Davis, who was in the circle for East, started off the bottom of the fifth by plunking Kendall Anderson. The no-hitter was finally broken up with one out in the inning on a single by Hendrix. Alyson Archer followed with a single to left scoring West’s first run of the night.
Already leading 6-1, the Lady Jags added two important insurance runs in the top of the sixth. Welch reached base and scored, stealing two bases during her trip. Underwood scored for the third time on the night, drawing a walk, and eventually coming in on a passed ball to make it an 8-1 romp.
“I’m pleased (with the offense) but not satisfied,” Chris Slone said.
West, which only had two hits in the first five innings, broke out in the bottom of the sixth. Taylor Slone led off with a triple to right field, and Preston followed with a two-run home run over the left-field wall.
East recorded two quick outs, but West wasn’t quite done, sparking a two-out rally. Anderson drew a walk, and a double by Jessica Baker put runners on second and third. A throwing error by Underwood on a ball hit by Hendrix allowed Anderson and Baker to score and make it an 8-5 game.
Hendrix and the defense kept East off the board in the top of the seventh.
Talyor Slone reached on a one-out single in the bottom of the second, and Preston singled to left to bring the tying run to plate in Ashley Brunty. Brunty went down on strikes, making Samantha Cross West’s last chance. She went down as Davis’ 11th strikeout of the game.
“(We) started to get loose in the last few innings. But it was just too late. We just waited too late,” Baker said. “If we had a few more innings, we probably could have gotten some things going.”
East has now won four straight against its rival. All four games have been decided by three runs or fewer.
The Lady Colts last beat East in 2009.