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Lady Rebels coast through season opener

The Franklin Lady Rebels softball team couldn’t have asked for a better start to their season as they routed Hillwood 19-1 Tuesday afternoon.

Franklin brought the heat on the offensive side after trailing Hillwood 1-0 after the top half of the first inning, scoring five runs in the first inning and unleashing 14 more in the home half of the second.

Senior Lady Rebel pitcher Kate Mosley started the game a tad bit shaky but her coach understood why.

“My senior pitcher, I think had some first game jitters and walked a couple,” coach Marshall Winkler said. “We had a few first game jitters there in the first inning, but after that, I told them their hard work paid off.”

With Mosley shaking off the jitters, the offense was able to back her up with the outburst. The second through fourth hitters in the Franklin lineup, consisting of Amy Mitchel, Libby Sugg and Katie Whalen, carried the bunch by scoring a combined eight runs in their nine combined plate appearances. Sugg was the stud of the group, batting 2-2 with a walk, double, three stolen bases and four runs batted in – three stemming from a home run in the second inning.

“The (middle of the order) is real strong,” Winkler said. “Offensively, we feel like that’s our strong part of our team and we felt like that going into the season. Our girls have worked hard in the offseason the last two or three years and that’s really going to pay off for us this season.”

Suggs wasn’t the only Lady Rebel picking up stolen bases. There were too many stolen bases to count as Franklin stayed aggressive on the base paths and took advantage of the error stricken Hillwood defense.

“It’s a combination of both (being aggressive and taking advantage of errors),” Winkler said. “We want to be aggressive on the base paths and they obviously were making a bunch of mistakes.”

With the game out of reach and the mercy-rule only allowing three innings of play, Franklin was able to get a few young players some action. Winkler always enjoys getting those girls experience on the varsity level.

“It helps your team unity and it helps the moral that they got to play in the varsity game,” Winkler said. “So, essentially we had our JV team out there playing the last inning or so.”

The Lady Rebels had a quick turn-around and played at Summit High School Wednesday night before traveling to Chattanooga this weekend to face Ooltewah.

Posted on: 3/12/2013


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