Frozen out at Southern
With three innings in the books, Southern Vance offered its visiting crosstown rival one more at-bat. Northern didn’t take it — and that was just fine with the Raiders after a frigid Thursday afternoon on the diamond with game time temperatures in the 30s.
The players, mostly bundled in sweatshirts or jackets, raced through the handshake line as frozen precipitation rained down. Southern led 11-0 when the game was called due to the inclement weather. The remainder of the contest will not be played and the Raiders are credited with a win.
“It was sleeting,” said Southern head coach Leann Harrell. “I’ve never been in a game where it was sleeting. That was the coldest I think we’ve ever played in.”
Southern was relatively hot at the plate; seven Raiders recorded base hits and five had RBIs.
Southern pitcher Brittany West batted 3-for-3 and didn’t allow any hits in the season-opening win. The sophomore walked six batters — probably to be expected given the conditions.
West and four other Raider starters had practiced only once after coming over from the basketball team.
“You really can’t tell,” Harrell said of West. “She’s got some work to do, but she’s just coming over from another sport. It was cold. She probably couldn’t even feel the ball. She did good.”
Kiyanna Kearney (1-for-2), Kristen Dickerson (1-for-3), Megan Hight (1-for-2), Rashyda Burwell (2-for-2), Ayeshia Teasley (1-for-1), and Bree Simmons also had hits for Southern. Burwell had three RBIs and Mikayla Sellers tallied two RBIs, earned on a walk and a groundout.
Teasley drove in two runs to put Southern up 3-0 in the opening frame before the Raiders got three more in the second.
Northern had six baserunners, but none got past second base. The inexperienced Vikings also had a few mishaps on both sides of the ball.
It was still a tough day to gauge performance for Vikings coach Keyachtta Hawkins.
“Very hard to tell,” she said. “I couldn’t feel my hands; they couldn’t feel their hands. Overall, I didn’t think it was too bad.”
Megan Andrews pitched each inning for Northern, which dropped to 0-2 on the season.
“She’s pretty new at this,” Northern pitching coach Meredith Thompson said of Andrews, a freshman. “She’s never pitched at this level before — so just really working on her confidence and some technique. She’s trying really hard and she’s doing a good job.”
The Vikings return to action Tuesday at home against Warren County. Southern is scheduled to visit J.F. Webb Friday — if the weather holds up.
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