03/25/07 — Reigning NCCSA 2-A softball champs struggle past Mt. Calvary

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Reigning NCCSA 2-A softball champs struggle past Mt. Calvary

By Rob Craig
Published in Sports on March 25, 2007 2:20 AM

Despite picking up a much needed win, Faith Christian coach Jeff Stocks was anything but pleased.

His Conquerors -- the defending N.C. Christian Association Class 2-A state champions -- had just beaten Mt. Calvary-Hookerton 3-2 on Friday afternoon to improve to 2-2, but Stocks wanted to see more improvement.

"We won ... and that's the good thing, but we still can't hit the ball," said Stocks. "We had infield mistakes. too, But hey, we won."

The win didn't come easy as the Warriors put the tying run on third with only one out in the top of the seventh.

Conquerors pitcher Jennifer Christopher then drilled fellow pitcher Amber Mills with a pitch, putting runners on first and third.

Christopher was able to get Crystal Johnson to pop out and fanned Lauren Moore on three pitches to seal the victory.

"(Jennifer) throws strikes," said Stocks. "She's not extremely fast, but she's consistent."

Unable to do much with the bat, Faith Christian instead used sloppy defense by Mt. Calvary and aggressive baserunning to score its three runs.

The Conquerors would strike in the bottom of the first when Renee Provencal hit a hustle double and advanced to third on a bunt single by Christopher. Katie Best grounded out to bring home Provencal with the game's first run.

Two errors helped Faith Christian put two more runs on the scoreboard in the second inning.

With two outs, Courtney Albritton reached first courtesy of a bad throw by second baseman Lindsey Harper. After Albritton stole second, she moved to third when Harper committed another error allowing Alyssa Hill to reach safely.

Wild pitches to Brook Anderson and Provencal brought home Albritton and Hill to give the Conquerors a 3-0 lead they'd never relinquish.

The aggressive baserunning by Anderson and Provencal would mean the difference between and win and a loss.

"We don't hit the ball good enough to not be aggressive on the bases," said Stocks, whose team swiped five bases on the afternoon. "I'm planning in my head that the girl up isn't going to get a hit so we need to take a chance on the bases."

With the score 3-2 in the top of the fifth, the Warriors had one run already across and a runner standing on third.

Christopher stepped up and struck Moore out looking -- just as she would do two innings later -- to end the threat and keep the game at 3-2.

Christopher evened her record at 2-2 by allowing only one earned run on six hits, walked two and struck out six.

Anderson went 1-for-2 from the lead-off spot with a walk and three stolen bases.

"Brook's really quick down the line and doesn't mind sliding," said Stocks.

Faith Christian will look to continue its winning ways on Monday when the Conquerors host Neuse Christian in a doubleheader.

"Not an impressive win, but we'll take them anyway we can get them," said Stocks.

Mt. Calvary 000 110 0 -- 2 6 2

Faith 120 000 x -- 3 4 3

Leading Hitters -- Mt. Calvary -- Lindsey Harper 1-2; Brittany Hobbs 1-3. Faith Christian -- Brook Anderson 1-2; Renee Provencal 1-3, 2B; Jennifer Christopher 1-3; Katie Best 1-3, RBI.

LOB -- Mt. Calvary 8, Faith Christian 3. S -- K. Worthington, Stox. SB -- Harper (2), K. Worthington, Mills, R. Hobbs, Anderson (3), Christopher, Albriton.


Mt. Calvary

Mills (L) 6 4 3 1 2 6

Faith Christian

Christopher (W, 2-2) 7 6 2 1 2 6

WP -- Mills 2.