02/27/07 — Rosewood falls to Union

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Rosewood falls to Union

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on February 27, 2007 2:23 PM

Haile Meadows got the sign she liked, went into her wind-up and delivered her first pitch for Rosewood in three years.

The sophomore, who hadn't pitched since she had surgery on her right wrist during her seventh grade season, threw five strong innings and produced the Lady Eagles' only hit Monday afternoon as Rosewood lost its 2007 season opener 4-0 to Union.

Facing a Union team that finished 22-4 last year and lost 1-0 in the playoffs to eventual state-champion Pender, Meadows (0-1) gave up just two hits and three unearned runs in the top of the second inning.

"It feels good to be back out there," Meadows said. "I was a little nervous going into the game, but the team helped me out a lot. I didn't do as well as I had hoped, but our defense was so good out there. They'd hit the ball and we'd be all over it."

A nifty defensive play by senior shortstop Courtney Hill, who fielded a ball near the foul line in left field and fired a strike to third baseman Jennifer Hall, helped Rosewood (0-1) wriggle out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning. But three Eagle errors in the second allowed Union (1-0) to score three runs with two outs to take a 3-0 lead.

That turned out to be more than enough support for Spartans senior ace Krystle Thomas (1-0), who fanned seven and allowed just one walk and one hit in a complete-game effort.

"I was really proud of Krystle, this was just her second day out after basketball season ended," Union coach Douglas Burley said. "She pitched a good game and kept them off-balance all day. She's got a curveball -- I've never seen one break like that before."

Meadows singled up the middle with one out in the second for Rosewood's only hit. She advanced to second on a wild pitch, but Thomas recovered by striking out the next two hitters to end the threat. Meadows also walked to lead off the home half of the fifth, stole second, advanced to third on a groundout by Erin Taylor, but was thrown out at home by third baseman Alex Herring to end the inning.

"For the first game, and considering we haven't had but a couple practices together as a team, I was very pleased," Rosewood coach Debbie Bailey said. "We struggled some with hitting, but we're going to work on that."

After the three-error second, the Rosewood defense shined for the rest of the afternoon. Catcher Jessica Price threw out two baserunners attempting to steal, center fielder Christina Bruton made a terrific diving catch to take a hit away from Union's Danielle West in the sixth, and Bruton and left fielder April Pfeiffer both had assists in the seventh inning.

Aubrey Reinhard pitched the final two innings for the Eagles and allowed one run on one hit and two walks.

"I was pleased with the way Haile pitched," Bailey said. "She had only pitched a couple of times at practice. We have two more games this week and I kind of wanted to save her, so we put Aubrey in to finish the game and she did a good job, too."

For Union, Herring was 1-for-4 with a double and two RBIs, Katie Robinson was 1-for-3 with a double and an RBI, and Thomas was 1-for-2 and drew a pair of walks.

Rosewood is back in action today as the Lady Eagles play at cross-county rival Southern Wayne at 4 p.m.

Union 030 000 1 -- 4 3 1

Rosewood 000 000 0 -- 0 1 3

Leading hitters -- Union -- Krystle Thomas 1-2, 2 walks; Alex Herring 1-4, 2B, 2 RBIs; Katie Robinson 1-3, 2B, RBI. Rosewood -- Haile Meadows 1-1, walk.


Union (1-0)

Thomas (W) 7 1 0 0 1 7

Rosewood (0-1)

Meadows (L) 5 2 3 0 5 0

Reinhard 2 1 1 1 2 0