Devils softball bashes Bruins
EAGLE, Colorado ” Football players aren’t the only ones who like Friday night lights.
Make way for the Eagle Valley softball team, which opened up its home tournament under the lights of the Eagle County Fairgrounds Friday night, downing Cedaredge, 11-4, in five innings.
“It’s so much fun,” Eagle Valley center-fielder Rachel Landon said. “I love playing under the lights.”
Continuing the Friday night lights theme, the game even ended with sort of a three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust moment. After Devils pitcher Melissa Rodriguez let go with a wild pitch, the Bruins’ Taryn Fischer broke for home.
Eagle Valley catcher Nicole Harvey came up with the ball and held her ground. After the collision ” and a seemingly interminable wait ” Harvey raised the ball, showing that she held on, clinching the win.
“Always nice to start with a win,” Devils manager Bill Beasley said. “We’re ready to play tomorrow.”
Eagle Valley (3-5) takes on 5A Grand Junction at 11 a.m., followed by Aspen at 4:45 p.m. as the Eagle Valley Invitational continues today.
The Devils gave their fans plenty for which to cheer Friday night, taking their usually aggressive approach on the base paths. Elise Byron opened the first inning with a walk, advanced to second on a grounder, stole third and put Eagle Valley on the board thanks to sacrifice from Kara Platt.
Eagle Valley secured things with a seven-run second. The Devils were patient with Bruins pitcher Megan Caywood, drawing walks and taking extra bases when she was wild. Landon ripped a two-run single right back up the middle past Caywood for a 4-0 lead.
“Rachel Landon is probably our strongest hitter,” Beasley said. “She can hit the ball hard. Poor pitcher, she gets hit every time.”
Rodriguez capped the inning with a two-run knock of her own and the Devils were cruising. The Devils added three more in the bottom of the third, mostly from a a single from second-baseman Kelsey Andrews, who plated two.
Devils starting-pitcher Narcie Hernandez took advantage of the run support. She hurled four shutout innings, fanning three before giving way to Hernandez. For Hernandez it was her first time on the mound this season, and she got into a little trouble, but it was good experience for her and the rest of the Devils, who finished the game with six underclassmen on the field.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or firstname.lastname@example.org.