Doughty fires one-hitter in Vidalia’s win

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 23, 2003

VIDALIA, La. &045; Only a unassuming bunt single kept Vidalia pitcher Miranda Doughty from making the best possible start in her first time to pitch in the postseason.

Doughty cruised into the fifth inning before Heather Jordan reached base on a well-executed bunt single to give Jonesboro-Hodge its first hit of the game. Doughty retired the next seven batter to lead the Lady Vikings to a 7-0 win to open the Class 2A playoffs Tuesday.

Doughty made her first playoff start, and she hopes it won’t be the last. The Lady Vikings will play at Farmerville Saturday with game time to be determined.

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&uot;I was just trying to be relaxed the best I could,&uot; said Doughty, who struck out 14 and walked one. &uot;I didn’t want to be nervous. I wanted to throw and just play my game.

I was a disgusted little bit (at the bunt single). If they were going to get a hit, let them get a good hit.&uot;

Doughty went with her normal rotation of pitches &045; curveball, riseball, fastball and changeup &045; while using the curveball to set up the fastball. Up against a young Lady Tigers squad that at one point had all eighth- and ninth-graders in the field, Doughty gave up just two balls hit to the outfield.

Keisha Wallace walked in the second inning but was forced out at second. Jordan went to second on a wild pitch after her bunt single, but Doughty got Clarissa Morgan to strike out to end the inning and leave her stranded.

&uot;Miranda looked pretty good, and she threw a good game,&uot; Vidalia head coach Gary Paul Parnham said. &uot;Her control was really good. There were some spots we had to hit, and I thought throughout the game she hit those spots. I was going to pitch both (Doughty and Jenny Watson) of my pitchers, and I had her warming up. But I decided to stick with Miranda.

&uot;Last year Jenny pitched both playoff games. Miranda has improved a lot in one year. She’s turning into a great pitcher for us.&uot;

While the Lady Tigers struggled at the plate, they fared better in the field behind freshman pitcher Megan Rowe, who allowed just six hits. Errors in the first and fourth helped create opportunities for the Lady Vikings, and they scored two in the first and three in the fourth to take control.

&uot;I have a young team &045; mostly eighth- and ninth-graders,&uot; J-H head coach Alison Amidon said. &uot;This is my first year with this team. When I came here, they were just learning how to catch and throw. We won a district game, and it was the first time in four or five years. This is their first playoff game in 15 years.&uot;

Doughty had the biggest hit in the fourth inning when she doubled home Heather Miller and Watson for the 5-0 lead. In the first Miller scored on a wild pitch and Watson on a Jaci Deweese groundout, but the Lady Vikings left runners stranded at second and third when Kelsey Leake popped out to first.

In the fifth Christy Corley was left stranded at third.

&uot;I’m satisfied with the pitching, and I’m satisfied with the defense,&uot; Parnham said. &uot;I’m not satisfied with our hitting. I don’t know if our confidence is blown hitting-wise, but we’ve definitely got to hit it better than we’re hitting it now. We put runners on second and third with one out, and I don’t if we even scored that inning &045; maybe one. We’re not getting the key hits. We hit the ball better in the sixth inning, but we’ve got to put a whole ball game together hitting-wise.&uot;

The Lady Vikings tacked on two in the sixth as Emily Raley and Miller crossed the plate. A Deweese groundout brought Miller home, but Rowe got Christy Corley on a groundout to end the inning and leave Watson stranded at third.

&uot;She leads the team in hitting,&uot; Amidon said of Rowe. &uot;She has a curve, and she’s working on her rise right now. We had eight- and ninth-graders in the field for half the game. We’re going to lose just one starter next year.&uot;