Softball: Springstead ace does it all

Eagles pitcher Becky Powell strikes out 17 and has an RBI double in a win over rival Central.

By Derek J. LaRiviere, Times Correspondent
Published February 23, 2008

SPRING HILL - One ace pitcher struck out 17, gave up no earned runs, delivered an RBI double and almost ended up on the losing end.

But Becky Powell did enough to drive Springstead past county rival Central 2-1 in 10 innings.

"It's so nice having Becky as a security blanket," Springstead coach Craig Swartout said. "She's tough as nails, the toughest kid mentally I've ever coached at this level."

Powell established her career-high for strikeouts in a game, fanning 14 straight at one point. Even with her dominance, Springstead (6-1) was stuck in a scoreless tie with Central (2-4) through seven innings.

"We didn't come out tonight wanting it as much as we should have," Powell said. "We had to get hyped up and start making better contact at the plate."

In the top of the eighth, the Bears scratched out a run off Powell thanks to a flurry of Eagles errors. Bears third baseman Linda Thompson was ruled to be hit by a pitch with one out despite an argument from Swartout.

After Thompson stole second, consecutive errors from Eagles leftfielder Christina Morrolla and second baseman Jamie Vitale allowed her to score.

Powell responded in the bottom half of the inning. After catcher Olivia D'Acunto reached on an error and Jamie Lee Basinger walked, Powell came up with two on and no outs. She struck a double down the rightfield line to drive in D'Acunto.

"We just came out flat again tonight," Swartout said. "We have to figure out what's going on at the plate if we're going to get better."

Bears starter Mackenzie Burns put in a workmanlike effort in a complete-game loss.

Burns scattered two earned runs and eight hits over 10 innings. One of those hits was the winning bases-loaded single off the bat of Springstead third baseman Shelby Vaccarro.

Springstead 2 Central 1

10 innings