The Durant Lady Lions had to settle for a split decision Saturday in the first fast-pitch contests against district opponents.
After a 10-2 loss against Collinsville, the Lady Lions bounced back for a 7-3 win over the Cardinals. Senior pitcher Kailyn Ward went the distance in both games.
Durant overcame a combined 21 Cardinal hits with timely defense and .242 hitting from the Lady Lion batting order. In the win, every offensive player contributed something at the plate or on the basepaths.
Durant jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead by the second inning, sparked by two of three hits for Colby Holder. The lead increased to 6-0 in the third when Kylie Manning stretched a single over to third on passed balls. Alexa Richards singled, and Katheryn Prentice then hit a two-RBI double.
The bottom-order hitting was on fire in game two. Richards collected a fourth inning RBI after she brought home Ward, who started a late run with a two-out single. In an odd fifth inning out, Prentice nearly whacked a scissor-tailed flycatcher (the state bird) with a fly ball to right field.
The defensive difference in the game was the hustle play of the Durant outfield against powerful Collinsville hitting. Kenzi Clapp made five grabs in center field, freshman Logan Hime impressed with a couple of running catches in right, and fellow freshman Riley Andis made some late snags – including the final out of the game after a two-run Cardinal rally.
In the 10-2 loss, Katie Caraway was 3-4 at the plate with three singles; Holder was 2-4 with a double, single and a run; Ward was 2-4; Richards collected an RBI. Caraway made some heads-up plays roving the left side of the infield, undoubtedly saving the game from getting further out of hand.
In the fifth inning, Clapp caught a fly and roped it to Richards at home plate for a tag which prevented a Cardinal run. Holder hustled for a foul pop up in the sixth, but the defensive savvy could not overcome lackluster results on the offensive end as the team hit .212 in game one compared to .273 in the win.
Durant stands at 2-1 after three home games, and the Lady Lions will travel to Valliant on Monday before hosting McAlester on Tuesday.