Washington 12Us off to a fast startPublished 10:52pm Tuesday, July 9, 2013
The Washington 12U All-Stars began the ENC Babe Ruth state tournament in grand fashion as they rolled to a 19-2 four-inning victory over Kinston in their tourney opener on Tuesday at the Susiegray McConnell Complex.
Early morning rain pushed the game’s start time back a few hours but the All-Stars’ bats showed no signs of rust as they rallied for 10 runs in the first inning.
“I’m proud of my girls for being very patient at the plate,” Washington coach Dallis Tucker said. “They saw different speeds of pitching and two different styles of pitching and my girls were focused on hitting strikes and trying to put the ball in play. I’m very proud of their fundamentals and the way they didn’t try to do too much with the ball.”
The Washington All-Stars struck from the top down to the bottom of their lineup as Haylee Simpkins went 4-4, Devin Bunch finished 3-4, Abbigail Tucker was 2-2, Grace Lassiter went 2-3 and Blake Swanner, Summer Campbell, Danielle Maurizzio and Emma Davis each added a hit.
Tucker said his team benefited greatly by getting production from the lower half of the lineup.
“I tell you it’s a blessing for me that the girls from the mid to lower half of the lineup (we’re hitting well),” Tucker said. “When we get power hitting like that with kids on base in front of them it’s very exciting and it leads to lots of RBIs. Most teams expect to mow through the bottom of the lineup but I have mashers down there and I’m very fortunate.”
Rebekah Williams got the win for Washington as she yielded one run in three innings of work, while Haylee Simpkins pitched the fourth and final inning and allowed one run.
“Rebekah was able to get a lot of strike outs and a lot of ground outs, which makes us feel better because it means the batters are hitting the top of the ball,” Tucker said. “She did her job and kept everything low and she was very consistent.”
Tucker said having a 10-0 lead after the first inning was a great luxury.
“A 10-0 lead allows me to play a little more aggressive,” Tucker said. “It allows me to try to move kids in spots where they don’t always get a chance to play and that’s wonderful for us because we have a lot of talented kids. They’re all All-Stars because they’re very talented.”
WP: Rebekah Williams
Hitting: W — Abbigail Tucker 2-2, Blake Swanner 1-3, Campbell 1-3, Haylee Simpkins 4-4, Devin Bunch 3-4, Danielle Maurizzio 1-1, Emma Davis 1-2, Grace Lassiter 2-3.