By Ben Murphy
Harrison softball ontinued its early season surge Tuesday night, topping host Houghton Lake 12-1 (five innings) and 12-2 (five innings) in Jack Pine Conference play.
“Defensively we made too many mistakes and we must start to do a better job making out,” Harrison head coach Matt Cooper said. “Offensively we bunted the ball really well and put some pressure on the defense. We just need to keep getting better every day.”
Allison Lipovsky pitched five innings in game one to get the win, giving up one un-earned run on three hits and 14 strikeouts.
Haley Sulla and Lipovsky both had two hits, with Lipovsky adding two RBI. Hillary Brewer had one hit and four RBI, Erica Heckman had one hit and one RBI, Taylor Bondie had one hit and one RBI and Emily Gillespie had one hit and one RBI.
Lipovsky earned the win in game two as well, pitching five innings and giving up two un-earned runs, on one hit and 12 strikeouts.
The Lady Bobcats took advantage of two Lady Hornet errors in the first inning, scoring two runs to take an early 2-0 lead.
Harrison wasted no time responding however, getting three straight doubles by Sulla, Brewer and Bondie to help spark three runs in the bottom of the first.
Lipovsky continued tossing shutout innings from there, with the Harrison offense scoring two runs in the second, four in the third, two in the fourth and one in the fifth to secure the mercy win.
Sulla and Brandi Powell both finished with three hits in the win, Brewer and Bondie both had two, with Heckman and Katelyn Sherrick both adding one hit apiece. Bondie tallied three RBI, with Brewer and Sulla both adding two.
On Thursday, April 25 Harrison swept visiting Gladwin in another JPC twinbill, winning 7-0 and 23-2.
Lipovsky pitched all seven innings of game one to pick up the win, giving up three hits while striking out 18 and walking one batter.
The game was scoreless until the third inning, when Sulla reached base with one out on an error. Sulla moved to second base on a wild pitch and doubled to score her to put the Hornets up 1-0.
Lipovsky singled to start the fourth inning, an inning that Harrison pulled ahead 5-0. Harrison scored two more runs in the fifth and made the 7-0 final stand.
Brewer finished with one double and three RBI, Sulla had one hit and one RBI and Lipovsky and Gillespie both finished with one hit.
The Hornets scored five runs in the first inning, two in the second, 16 in the third to pick up the mercy win.
Lipovsky pitched three innings to earn the win, giving up two earned runs on three hits, five strikeouts and one walk.
Lipovsky had a two-run homer run in the third and finished with four hits and seven RBI, Brewer had four hit and four RBI, Heckman, Sulla, Bondie, Gillespie, Mary Devine and Sherrick all had one hit.
“We only had five hits in the first game so I was happy to see us hit the ball better in the second game,” Cooper said. “The girls did a really nice job of getting bunts down to move runners. Lipovsky pitched two really good games and the girls behind her made some nice plays.”
Harrison (9-0 overall, 4-0 JPC) played at Beaverton on Thursday, play at Pine River on Saturday and host Clare May 7.