ROCKINGHAM — NaLee Jacobs was able to keep her composure in the circle with her team holding a one-run lead over Pinecrest in the top of the seventh inning.
The senior pitcher retired the Lady Patriots’ first two batters, Hannah Stevens (fly ball) and Brianna Knowles (groundout), but gave up a single to Katelyn Chisholm and then battled with the bat of Hannah Spinali — which eventually led to a full count.
Jacobs was able to win the battle, however, throwing her last strike of the game and sealing the 5-4 victory for the Richmond Senior softball team.
“Her confidence got a little shaken when she gave up that first home run and then she gave up the second, but she came back. She hit her spots and she didn’t walk anybody,” coach Wendy Wallace said. “She knew she had to step up and get a big play right there. That was tough for her and I thought she did a really good job keeping her composure.”
Pinecrest’s Hailey Sales got the visiting team on the board first with a three-run homer in the top of the third inning. It took a while for Richmond (15-1, 8-0 SEC) to answer, but Jadyn Johnson’s hit in the bottom of the fourth brought home Brianna Baysek and Kayla Hawkins in order to put the Lady Raiders back in reach.
Baysek’s RBI single, plus an error in the outfield on her hit, led to Mackenzie Webb making it home and Richmond taking the 4-3 advantage. Hawkins got her first hit of the night two bats later, which was an RBI single that brought in Baysek.
Sales would blast another one over the wall for Pinecrest’s fourth and final run of the night in the top of the sixth inning.
“We always do a good job of battling back. It’s just nice to see people continue to step up and look more and more comfortable at the plate,” Wallace said. “That’s big for us (in order) to keep going and to advance…that we’ve got other people contributing other than our usual.”
Baysek and Owen Bowers led the way in Thursday’s win with two hits each. Jacobs, Johnson, Hawkins, Peyton Fann and Savannah Lampley added a hit each, giving the Lady Raiders a total of nine on the night.
Jacobs pitched all seven innings, giving up seven hits, no walks and striking out five batters.
Baseball snaps 4-game losing streak
ROCKINGHAM — The Richmond Senior baseball team played with “a lot more intensity” Thursday evening than it did earlier in the week.
The Raiders got some solid pitching from senior Jack Webb and junior Drew Loving, took advantage of Pinecrest’s costly errors and picked up a 7-2 win — putting an end to a four-game skid.
“I felt like over our past four games, we just hadn’t brought the intensity we needed to and it kind of showed in our performance,” coach Ricky Young said. “We talked a lot yesterday about bringing the right mentality that our baseball team in the past brings. And I thought the guys did a good job of bringing that tonight.”
Jayvon Boyer, Jonathan Lee and Jake Ransom all scored on errors in the bottom of the second in order for Richmond to take a 3-2 lead after two. Boyer came home on a dropped fly ball and then Lee and Ransom did the same after a errant throw to first base.
Ransom would record a 2-RBI single in the fifth to cap off the scoring for the home team.
“It was a good conference win. We beat a good pitcher and a really good team,” Young added.
Richmond (12-7, 4-4 SEC) will now look to carry this momentum into the weekend, as it will go up against South View at the Terry Sanford Tournament on Saturday at 7 p.m. The Raiders are scheduled to play another game, opponent TBD, in the tournament Monday.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. at 910-817-2673 and follow the sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.