Bulldogs softball survived the first round of district play in dominant fashion, routing the sixth-seeded Macon Tigers 7-0 in Moberly Wednesday.
The Tigers held the Bulldog offense scoreless until the fifth inning, when junior Danielle Baumgartner hit a two-RBI single to drive home juniors Haley Test and Alison Mudd. Test had started the Bulldog rally with a single. Mudd followed by hitting into a fielder's choice but a Macon fielding error allowed Test to reach second safely before sophomore Laura Fischer hit a sacrifice bunt to advance the two runners.
Sophomore Sydnee Playter entered the game as courtesy runner for Baumgartner before freshman D.J. Aaron hit a single and junior Abby Dick reached on an error to load the bases. A triple by freshman Kenzie Robnett brought in three runs for the Bulldogs and gave them a five run advantage to end the fifth.
The Bulldog bats stayed alive in the sixth, starting with a single by Test. Test advanced to second on a sacrifice by Mudd before Fischer hit an RBI-single and brought Mudd home. Fischer went on to score on a passed ball and give the Bulldogs their final run of the night.
Mexico's only other hit on the night was a first-inning single by Fischer.
The victory improves the Bulldogs to 15-7 for the year.
Baumgartner had another strong night pitching during the shut-out, striking out seven Tigers while allowing just one walk and one hit.
The win came on the same day NCMC coaches announced that four Bulldogs had been named to the all-conference team. Baumgartner earned honors for the third-time as a pitcher while Baker, Mudd and Test were honored as position players. Baker is a two-time honoree, while Mudd and Test earned the honors for the first time.
The third-seeded Bulldogs return to the field tonight to face NCMC rival and second-seed Kirksville in the fourth meeting between the two teams this year.
On Sept. 3 the Tigers came out on top 3-0 in the first meeting of the year between the two teams. The Bulldogs bounced back a week later, edging the Tigers 11-10 during the second round of the Jefferson City Tournament. Mexico came out on top again last week, beating the Tigers 4-0 in the final regular-season meeting of the two teams.
Despite holding the advantage in head-to-head play, the Bulldogs finished second in the NCMC behind the Tigers.
That storyline holds parallels to 2012, when after splitting the NCMC title with the Bulldogs, Kirksville came out on top during district play before falling to eventual state-champions Centralia. The Bulldogs, who have outscored the Tigers 15-13 this year, hope they can turn the tables against their rival.
The winner will face the winner of tonight's meeting between top-seeded Centralia and seventh-seed Moberly in the district championship game Saturday.
Page 2 of 2 -