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Rebels take win on mound, base paths

NATCHEZ — The Adams County Christian Lady Rebels can thank aggressive base running and the pitching of Mary Sanders for their 5-3 win over the Central Private School Lady Rebels Thursday afternoon.

The normally hot bats didn’t show up, as the Rebels had just three hits. Defensive lapses added up to seven errors in this critical MAIS District 5-AA match-up.

Maggie Ray, who twice was a courtesy runner for Asthon Mason and ran once for Sanders, accounted for five of the team’s eight stolen bases and scored three runs.

“One of the big differences tonight was the base running of Maggie Ray,” ACCS head coach Forrest Foster said. “Base running is what kept us in the ball game tonight. Real smart base running.”

Shelby Guice stole two bases and Braxtyn Elveston stole one base and both of them scored on a two-out single up the middle by Nikki Worthy in the bottom of the second inning. That gave ACCS a 3-0 lead.

The host Lady Rebels’ first run occurred when Ray, running for Mason after she led off with a single, stole second base, stole third base, and scored on a ground ball to second by Sage Atkins which followed an Elveston walk. Guice laid down a bunt that the visiting Lady Rebels could not make a play on, but Elveston was held up at third base.

Even though she struck out just three batters, Sanders allowed just three hits and walked only one batter.

“She did a real good job tonight. The bad thing about it was we had so many errors,” Foster said. “By all rights, they shouldn’t have scored a run tonight. She hit her spots. Overall, we’re still a young team. We’re steadily learning and steadily getting better.”

With one out in the top of the third inning, A. Stuckey and Fucich each reached on an error. Wicker then got on by way of an error that scored two runs to make it a one-run game.

ACCS got one of those runs back in the bottom of the third. Sanders led off with a walk before Ray came in as a courtesy runner. After Ray stole second, Mason hit the ball back to Fucich, who made an error that allowed Rae to go to third. Atkins then singled to bring in Rae for a 4-2 lead.

After an error, a stolen base and an RBI single by Fryoux in the top of the fourth made it a 4-3 game, ACCS scored the game’s final run in the bottom of the fifth before time was called. Mason reached first base on an error by the second baseman and Ray ran for her. Ray stole second base and reached third on a passed ball. With Atkins at bat, Fucich threw a wild pitch and Ray crossed home plate safely.

Stuckey and Fucich did their best to keep Central Private in the game by allowing a combined three hits and striking out 11 ACCS batters. Stuckey, who was tagged with the loss after allowing three runs in two innings, struck out four and walked two. Fucich struck out seven in three innings of work.

“They did a wonderful job. To tell you the truth, I was disappointed in our hitting tonight,” Foster said. “They’re not the best pitching we’ve seen by a long shot.”

ACCS (7-8, 2-2) will next play in the Parklane Academy Tournament on Saturday. In pool play, the Lady Rebels take on East Rankin at 9:30 a.m., Brookhaven Academy at 1 p.m., and Parklane at 3:30 p.m. If they finish first or second in their pool, they will advance to bracket play, which starts at 5 p.m.

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