RACINE, Ohio — Winning felt so nice, they did it twice.
The Southern softball team picked up its first two victories of the season on its home field Saturday, sweeping non-conference guest Hannan by counts of 18-3 and 10-4.
The Lady Wildcats took a 1-0 lead after a two-out Halie Johnson double in the top of the first inning, but then Hannan was held off the board until the fifth.
Southern (2-3) scored five runs in the first and followed it up with five more in the second. The Lady Tornadoes were ahead 12-1 after a two-run third inning, and then scored six times in the bottom of the fourth.
HHS pushed two runs across in the top of the fifth, but couldn’t avoid the 18-3 mercy rule setback.
Abby Cummins was the winning pitcher of record in a complete game for SHS, striking out five batters, walking two and hitting one, while giving up three runs, two earned, on four hits.
Josie McCoy took the loss in two innings of work for Hannan, striking out two batters, walking six and hitting three, while allowing 10 runs, eight earned, on five hits. Isabella Nagy pitched the next frame for the guests, striking out two, walking two and giving up two unearned runs on one hit. Johnson finished the game in the circle and gave up six earned runs on five hits, two walks and one hit batter.
Southern’s offense was led by Jordan Hardwick, who was 3-for-3 with a triple, two runs and two runs batted in. Caitlynn DeLacruz was 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs, while Cummins doubled once, scored once and earned two RBIs.
Kayla Boyer and Cierra Whitesell both contributed a single, two runs and two RBIs to the winning cause, Sydney Adams added a single and two RBIs, while Lily Allen and Ally Shuler both had a single and one RBI, with Allen also scoring once.
Brooke Crisp, Avery King and Kassie Barton scored three runs apiece in the win, while Valerie Ritchhart crossed home plate once.
Leading Hannan at the plate, Johnson was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI, and Bailey Coleman was 2-for-2 with a pair of runs. Pamela Ochs scored once in the setback.
Southern had three errors and six runners left on base in the first game, while the guests had six errors and five runners stranded.
In the second game, Hannan led 3-0 after a costly SHS error in the opening frame, but the Lady Tornadoes scored once in the bottom of the first and twice in the second to tie the game at three.
A two-run single by Cassidy Roderus in the bottom of the third gave Southern a 5-3 lead, and the Purple and Gold never trailed again.
Southern surged for five runs in the bottom of the fourth, and scored once in the fifth, capping off the Lady Tornadoes’ 10-4 win.
Shuler was the winning pitcher of record in a complete game for SHS, striking out three batters, walking one and hitting one, while allowing four runs, one earned, on five hits.
Nagy tossed a complete game for HHS, striking out three, walking three and hitting three, while surrendering 10 runs, seven earned, on seven hits.
Roderus led the SHS offense, going 2-for-3 with a run scored and three runs batted in. Shuler tripled once and scored a trio of runs, while Caelin Seth doubled once, scored once and drove in two. Crisp singled once and scored twice in the win, Diamond Call singled once and scored once, while Rhanda Cross added a single and an RBI. Ella Cooper and Natalie Porter scored a run apiece for the Purple and Gold.
Hannan’s offense was led by Ochs, who was 2-for-3 with a double and two runs, and Coleman, who was 2-for-3 with one run. Kaitlin Lloyd singled once in the setback, Johnson scored once and drove in two runs, while McCoy earned an RBI.
Southern committed five errors and stranded two runners, while Hannan had two errors and five runners left on base.
These teams are slated to meet again on April 8 in Ashton.
After hosting Ironton St. Joseph on Monday, Hannan will travel to Cross Lanes Christian on Tuesday. Following its trip to Federal Hocking on Monday, Southern will be back home on Tuesday against Waterford.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.