Trinity Episcopal Day School’s Kailey Hutchins hurls the ball to home plate during the second inning of the Saints win over Central Private Tuesday evening. (Ben Hillyer / The Natchez Democrat)
Trinity Episcopal Day School’s Kailey Hutchins hurls the ball to home plate during the second inning of the Saints win over Central Private Tuesday evening. (Ben Hillyer / The Natchez Democrat)

Trinity’s defense accounts for comeback victory

Published 12:01am Wednesday, August 21, 2013

VIDALIA — After being plagued by errors for much of the season, Trinity Episcopal head coach Miranda Doughty decided to make a change in the team’s defense. And so far, it has paid off.

In Tuesday afternoon’s 5-2 come-from-behind win over the Central Private School Lady Rebels at the Concordia Recreation District 3 Complex, the Lady Saints committed just one error. And they got key hits from Mallory Lancaster and Tali Beard.

“The last two games, I swapped up my defense,” Doughty said. “From 10, 12 errors early in the season to no errors in the last game (a 7-2 win at Brookhaven Academy) and one tonight is a big difference.”

Lancaster turned the momentum of the game from the visiting Lady Rebels to the host Lady Saints with her three-run double that nearly went out. In fact, Doughty said she thought the ball went out. That gave Trinity a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the second inning.

Beard added an RBI triple in the bottom of the fourth and the Lady Saints scored another run in that frame to give them a 5-2 advantage.

“They’re being aggressive. They’re swinging at good pitches,” Doughty said. “Mallory had struggled for a long time. I told her this is it. She’s been hitting the past few games for us.”

She said another reason Trinity was effective was that the players are having a good eye at the plate and that they are taking advantage of their base-running. However, she added that the team is still having too many strikeouts.

Marty Lewis went 2-for-3 with a double and Hannah Fitt had a double for the Lady Saints.

Kailey Hutchins was the winning pitcher for Trinity. She gave up two runs, one earned, on five hits and two walks with three strikeouts in six complete innings.

“She was good. She started out, her pitches were out of the zone. They were high. I told her she needs to feel confident about the defense. Once she settled down, she started working ahead of the count and was throwing strikes,” Doughty said.

Central Private got off to a good start as it scored one run in the top of the first inning and one run in the top of the second. But once the Lady Saints took the lead in the bottom of the second, Hutchins was more relaxed and more in control. And that resulted in her pitching four straight scoreless innings.

Alex Stuckey took the loss for the Lady Rebels after allowing five runs, four earned, on seven hits, four walks and one hit batter while striking out six batters in five complete innings. She also went 3-for-3 at the plate.

Trinity Episcopal (7-7, 2-0) doesn’t play again until 6 p.m. next Monday at Wilkinson County Christian Academy in a pivotal MAIS District 7-A game for both teams.