Prep Softball: East Coweta blanks Northgate in 'Pink Out' victory
By DOUG GORMAN
It’s tough to score on the East Coweta Lady Indians softball team.
Just ask their last five opponents.
The Lady Indians beat Northgate 4-1 the first time the two teams played this season, before Northgate took a 2-0 decision at its home field.
Proceeds from Wednesday’s game went to help find a cure for cancer as the Pink Posse Charity and Children’s Hospital of Atlanta’s Aflac Cancer Center.
“I thought our girls did a really good job staying focused,” East Coweta head coach Franklin Deloach said. “There was a lot of activities going on before the game, but we did what we had to do to win against a good team.”
East Coweta senior pitcher Megan Chocallo pitched around some trouble in the first and second innings to go the distance and record the win.
After Brenna Skalski singled in the first inning, Chocallo pitched around the Lady Vikings’ early threat with a strikeout.
Casey Kent threatened to put the Lady Vikings on the board with the first run of the game in the second, but again Chocallo was able to seize the momentum with a pair of strikeouts.
Northgate sent two pitchers to the circle in Wednesday’s non-region game as McKenzie Peace started the contest and worked into the fourth inning, while Carliegh Myatt finished up the game.
Despite Shemiah Sanchez’s single in the first, Peace faced just six batters through the first two innings.
Catcher Katie Burns ended the first inning when she threw a perfect strike down to Kent, who tagged out Sanchez trying to steal.
Peace got strikeout for the second out in the second inning to help Northgate retire the Lady Indians in order.
The momentum swung the Lady Indians way in the third with the first run of the game. They added three more runs in the fourth and four more in the sixth.
The turning point in the game came when lead-off hitter Kia Smith ripped a two-out single in the third to bring home courtesy runner Jenny Matherne.
“We were just waiting for somebody to grab the momentum, and Kia came through, that hit was huge,” Deloach said.
(To view or purchase photos from this game, please visit http://photos.times-herald.com/mycapture and click on Sports / Softball.)
Extra base hits played a big part in East Coweta opening up the game in the fourth. An RBI double by third baseman Casey Lambert and a running-scoring triple by Sarah Colwell helped add a pair of runs to the Lady Indians’ side of the scoreboard.
Lauren Liebe also added an RBI in the inning to help push the Lady Indians lead out to 4-0.
East Coweta ended the game by the mercy rule when it added four more runs in the sixth. Smith’s second RBI of the game started the fireworks, but Sanchez ended the contest when she ripped a bases-loaded triple.
Chocallo gave up three hits, all in the first three innings, and also finished with three strikeouts.
“Her pitch count was up a little bit early, but she did a great job,” Deloach said.
Her best effort came in the middle innings after she retired seven straight batters. Skalski finally reached for Northgate in the top of the sixth when she made to first on an infield error. Chocallo then retired the next three Northgate batters.
Kent’s double in the second inning was the only extra base hit for the Lady Vikings.
Deloach said putting out Northgate’s threat early was big.
“We talk all the time about softball being a game of momentum, and we call it Mr. Mo. We want Mr. Mo sitting on the bench with us as early in the game as we can, so stopping them was big,” he said.
Northgate defense was paced by Ebonee Echols, who threw out two Lady Indian base runners trying to score.
East Coweta’s Smith had three hits and drove in two runs. Colwell reached base in all three at bats. Sanchez aso reached four times and stole a base.
The Lady Indians improved to 14-3 overall. Northgate dropped to 13-3.
Both teams return to region play today.
The Lady Vikings are at home for a Region 4-AAAA game vs. McIntosh, while East Coweta plays a doubleheader at Douglas County in contest that counts in the Region 3-AAAAA schedule.