CARTERVILLE — Despite struggling a bit in recent weeks, the Nashville softball team got back on track and picked up a big conference victory Tuesday.
Jenna Harris pitched a complete game and allowed just four hits as the Hornettes knocked off Carterville, 5-2, in SIRR Mississippi Division prep softball.
The Lions (12-4, 7-1) were previously unbeaten in league play.
“She threw the ball pretty well, she kept the ball down, and we made plays when we had to,” said Nashville coach Shaun Renth. “You can’t say enough about Jenna. She did a great job today.”
Megan Barrett scored on a wild pitch to give Carterville a 1-0 edge in the first inning. Nashville responded immediately.
Alli Liske hit a home run over the left field fence off of Baleigh Koester in the top of the second.
“She put a good swing on that, and I think it had just enough,” Renth said. “That was huge to get that run back, and it gave us momentum. It let them know that we’re here to play.”
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Carterville struggled with the bats, but Nashville’s Sophie Heck and MacKenzie McFeron made some nice plays defensively as well.
“(Nashville) played well, and we didn’t catch many breaks, but you’ve got to make your own breaks,” said Carterville coach Will Capie. “We didn’t really make many adjustments at the plate from at-bat to at-bat. Give credit to them, their defense was very good. They got quality hits when they needed them.”
The third inning seemed harmless enough for Koester, who retired the first two batters. But McFeron hit a single to left field, stole second, and scored on a base hit from Paige Kasten, which gave Nashville a 2-1 advantage.
“It was really short in center field, and she is probably the only one that scores on that,” Renth said. “Paige did a good job just hitting it up the middle. It was a good job by both of them.”
Libby Ahlers scored on an error in the fifth inning, and Nashville took a 3-1 lead. Montana Taylor got one back for Carterville when she drove in a run in the sixth on a ground out.
The Hornettes (16-8, 4-3) tacked on two more runs in the top of the seventh inning as well.
“We know that their lineup will keep them in just about any game,” Capie said of Nashville. “I thought Baleigh threw well, but defensively we weren’t as clean as we’ve been in the past.”