Cayla Beck posted a pair of hits, four stolen bases and three runs to lead Dublin to a 7-5 win against Comanche in District 8-2A softball Monday night at DHS.
After four Comanche runs in the top of the fifth put the Maidens in front 5-2, Dublin responded with four tallies of its own in the bottom half of the inning.
Beck reached on an error to start the fifth, then stole both second and third. She scored when Amber Lewis hit a ground ball to the pitcher, who tossed the ball to first only to have the first baseman attempt to make a play at the plate instead of getting the force out on the hitter. Beck was safe at home, cutting the Lady Lions' deficit to 5-3.
The remaining three runs in the bottom of the fifth came without a hit, as Wakeley Brown walked, stole a base and crossed the plate on a passed ball, Shelby Thiebaud reached on an error and later scored on a passed ball and Kristin Rayborn reached on a fielder's choice before she too made it home on a passed ball.
Dublin added an insurance run in the sixth when Beck used her second single of the contest to reach first, moved to second on yet another passed ball, stole third and then scored when Brown hit a ground ball to the right side of the infield.
The Lady Lions picked up what head coach Billy Young labeled a "gutsy performance" by pitcher MeKyla Leatherwood. Despite battling strep throat, Leatherwood pitched the entire game, and was solid outside of the fifth inning.
"It wasn't her best night, and we knew she was sick going into the game," Young said. "But she wanted the ball, and she did a good job. Our defense didn't help her much in the fifth, but she had three 1-2-3 innings and had two strikeouts.
Comanche's four runs in the fifth came on a pair of bloop singles, a double a walk and a fly out.
Dublin led 2-1 early on after Comanche scored in the top of the first and the Lady Lions came back with two runs in the bottom of the inning.
Beck's first single followed by another one-bagger by Brown set the stage for Shelby Thiebaud, who drove Beck home with a fielder's choice. Brown then scored on a fly ball off the bat of Amber Lewis to give DHS the early edge.
"She's the table-setter," Young said of Beck, who leads the team in hits, stolen bases and runs. "When she gets on, she usually finds a way to score. Some of that's her ability to run the bases, and some of that's because we usually hit well behind her."
Comanche committed six errors in the loss, compared to two by Dublin.
"They are well coached and are normally very fundamentally sound," Young said of the Maidens. "Six errors isn't what you normally expect from them, but we kept putting the ball in play and some of them were hard hits they just couldn't handle."
Dublin returned to the 8-2A diamond on Tuesday at Coleman.
Young also reported that a recent 15-0 district win against San Saba has been called into question.
"We were under the impression that in our district the mercy rule went into effect if a team was ahead by 15 runs after three innings or 10 runs after five he said. It turns out, we have to play five innings."
Because of this, Young says when San Saba visits Dublin later this season, SSHS will have one inning to attempt to score five runs before the district-opening victory can become official for DHS.
Assuming the win against San Saba stands, Dublin is now 10-6-1 on the year, and took a 2-0 district record to Coleman Tuesday.