Top ranked Lady Comets fall twice to Meridian

April 18, 2019

by Ben Murphy
Sports Writer

Two of the state’s best high school softball teams met up on Wednesday, April 10 when Meridian, ranked fourth in division three hosted Coleman, the top-ranked division four team in a non-league battle. There was no slowing down the Lady Mustangs however as they slugged 27 hits on the night to beat the Lady Comets 11-1 and 13-8.

The first game ended in just five innings, as Jaden Berthume pitched despite pitching a pair of complete games in a sweep of Mt. Pleasant Sacred Heart the night before, a game she also took a line drive to the knee in. Annabelle Bovee also pitched in relief.

“Jaden pitched two full games the night before, we gave her a go in game one but she wasn’t herself,” head coach Chad Klopf said. “Bovee gave us some good innings, but we didn’t help either of them out defensively or at the plate. We hit a lot of hard balls right at them in game one. Meridian can really hit the ball, credit to them.”

Meridian took a 2-0 lead after the first inning and a grand slam in the third inning gave it a 6-0 advantage and led 8-0 before the end of the inning.
Coleman had just two hits in the game, getting a double from Abigail Tubbs.

Zoe Merillat pitched for the Comets in game two, and though she wasn’t able to slow down the Mustangs either, Coleman did get its offense going.
“I’m proud of how Zoe did,” Klopf said. “She was strong for us through six and wore down in the seventh. Our bats kept us in the game the whole way. Kylie Herkel has a great day at the plate.”

A sacrifice fly by Tubbs in the bottom of the first saw the Comets down one at 2-1 and in the bottom of the second another sac-fly by Makailyn Monson kept them within one at 3-2.

The Comets continued to play situational ball with another sacrifice fly in the third, this time from Brianna Townsend to make it 3-3.

The Mustangs surged ahead 5-3 in the top of the fourth however and kept their hitting shoes on from there as they pulled away to the 13-6 final.

“Late in the season or if this was a conference game we might have made some adjustments and went back to Berthume in hopes of pulling out game two, but winning the game and chancing silly early season injuries wasn’t worth it,” Klopf said. “We will regroup and move forward toward our goals.”

Merillatt took the loss, giving up 17 hits and walking six.

Leading the offense was Kylie Herkel who hit a two run home run, Katelyn Pnacek had two hits, one RBI and scored two runs, Townsend had a double and two RBI, Kenzie Miller had a single and an RBI and Bovee added a double.

Coleman (4-2 overall) heads to Ashley on Tuesday and hosts Shepherd on Thursday.

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