Eagles work way out of jams in win over Halifax Academy

Apr. 08, 2013 @ 09:32 PM

Warren County escaped consecutive innings with the bases loaded and no outs before plating seven runs in the sixth inning of Monday’s 12-8 win over Halifax Academy.

Up 5-3, Halifax Academy loaded the bases in the fourth, but Warren County freshman starter Kelly Norwood got out of the jam with an infield fly rule out before the Viking head coach was called for interfering with an Eagle fielder at third base. The batter was ruled out on the play and Norwood got Tori Ladendorf grounding out to end the inning.

Junior Kassie Clary came on for Norwood in the fifth and gave up back-to-back hits to start the inning before Hannah Clary got on via an error.

Again, the Eagles survived as Halifax Academy’s Candice Smith was thrown out at home after a passed ball, Ryan Hilliard struck out and Jamie Harris was picked off by Warren County catcher Taylor Sikes at third base.

“That was real big. Key to us winning the game,” Warren County coach Shannon Jones said of the  top of the fourth and fifth innings. “It’s a great win, a confidence booster for us.”

Warren County lost at Halifax Academy earlier this season.

Viking left-hander Hannah Clary kept the Eagles off balance until the sixth when Warren County broke a tie at 5.

After the Eagles took the lead on a Halifax Academy error, Courtney Macklin drove in three runs on a line shot to right field to make it 9-5.

Warren County finished with 16 hits on the game. The Eagles’ bottom three batters, Kiara Alston, Kiana Alston and Kassie Clary, combined for eight hits.

“I think it was confidence,” said Jones. “We focused in a little more and we wanted to play.”

Halifax got three back in the seventh before Kassie Clary struck out Emily Conner to end the game.

Kassie Clary allowed four hits and struck out seven in three innings of work to get the win for the Eagles.

Jones has also been impressed with her freshman southpaw.

“She’s doing really good,” Jones said of Norwood. “No jitters, no lack of confidence. She’s coming in strong. She’s confident in her pitches and the things she wants to do.”

Warren County returns to 2-A Northern Carolina Conference action today at Roanoke Rapids.

                        1   2   3   4   5   6   7    FINAL

HALIFAX        3   0    2   0   0   0   3      8

WARREN      0   1    2   2  0   7   X     12

LEADING HITTERS

WARREN COUNTY ­­­— Kelsie Clary (1-for-5,), Taylor Sikes (1-for-2,), Courtney Macklin (1-for-3,), Mikayla Hargrove (2-for-4), Kelly Norwood (2-for-2), Shelby Branch (1-for-4), Kiara Alston (3-for-4), Kiana Alston (2-for-3), Kassie Clary (3-for-4)

Contact the writer at kholtzman@hendersondispatch.com.