04/13/05 — Myers' arm halts N. Duplin softball skid

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Myers' arm halts N. Duplin softball skid

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on April 13, 2005 1:59 PM

CALYPSO -- A solid pitching performance, error-free defense and opportunistic play helped the North Duplin softball team end its two-game losing streak Tuesday afternoon.

Freshman right-hander Kayla Myers threw a complete-game, one-hit shutout in a 9-0 conquering of Rosewood on the Rebels' diamond. North Duplin (7-3) finished 3-3 in first-half play in the Class 1-A Carolina Conference and gets a week off before entertaining archrival Spring Creek next Tuesday.

Rosewood (2-9, 1-4) is the guest of Princeton on Friday.

Myers, one of eight freshmen on the Rebels' roster, yielded a lead-off single to Stephanie Rhodes to start the game. She then retired 15 consecutive batters before issuing back-to-back walks to Abigail Barrow and pinch-hitter April Pfeiffer in the sixth inning.

"Kayla pitched an awesome game today," North Duplin coach Heather Best said. "Kayla has good control and good placement. When she's on, she's on (and) she was on tonight.

"(Catcher) Elizabeth (Lane) called the pitches. I was just real pleased with the way Kayla pitched."

Myers recorded six strikeouts, induced 10 ground-ball outs and forced three infield pop-ups. Lane gunned down a runner stealing third and first baseman Bethany Malcolm, the team's lone senior, notched a game-high 10 putouts.

Rhodes finished with the lone hit for the Eagles, who had just four base runners in the seven-inning contest.

The Eagles suffered their second straight shutout loss, including a no-hitter against league-leading North Johnston last Wednesday. Opponents have outscored Rosewood 16-0 the last 14 innings of play.

"You can't win ball games if you don't hit," Eagles coach Jennifer Cochran said. "We're struggling at the plate and it's experience. It's a rebuilding year and that's really hard for people to understand."

The loss overshadowed a solid pitching performance from Aubrey Reinhard. The right-hander flirted with a perfect game for three-plus innings until Brittany Carr doubled into the left center field gap in the fourth.

Reinhard held the Rebels scoreless in the inning.

"Aubrey did well and threw us off (in the box)," Best said. "I told the girls between innings to keep hitting the ball and it's going to fall sometime. I told them not to change anything, just do what you're doing.

"Unfortunately, they made some mistakes, too."

The Rebels gave Myers a five-run cushion in the fifth inning.

Malcolm spoiled Reinhard's shutout bid, plating Brittany Coley for the game-winning run with two outs. Two errors, one each in the infield and outfield, led to four unearned runs and the 5-0 lead.

North Duplin added four runs in the sixth, including Myers' two-RBI single to left field.

"I thought Aubrey did a great job on the mound and Chandra did a great job behind the plate," Cochran said. "They did a really good job of capitalizing on our mistakes. They're a good team and they're going to be all right.

"We'll get better."

Carr and second baseman Casey Pate each batted 2-for-3 in the Rebels' eight-hit attack. Seven of nine starters reached base at least once and every infielder had at least one defensive putout. Carr, the shortstop, had four -- all to Malcolm.

First baseman Jessica Price had a team-high seven putouts for Rosewood.