By Don Brown
In a combined Pinkout and Senior Night contest at the Cougar softball field, Grayson County scored seven times in the fourth inning to turn the game against Larue County into a five-inning, mercy-rule, 10-0 win.
The Cougars had been scheduled to play the Pinkout game last week, but when fears of bad weather canceled the game, it was rescheduled to this week to coincide with Senior Night festivities.
Following the game, the four Cougar seniors were honored along with their parents. Cathy Langley, Claire Crawford, Victoria Decker and Jordan Decker were recognized for their contributions to the Cougar softball program.
Victoria Decker earned the win for the Cougars, pitching all five innings, allowing just four hits while striking out nine. Larue County had a runner at second base with two outs in the second inning, but Decker struck out Kayla Skaggs to end the inning.
In the fourth inning, the Lady Hawks had runners at second and third with only one out, but Decker got both Megan Smith and Bethany Skaggs to ground out to Myranda Ward at first base and that threat ended. Decker then worked a 1-2-3 fifth inning to nail down the win.
The Cougars scored twice in the first inning to take the early lead. Singles by Kaylan Shull, Victoria Decker and Jessika Young loaded the bases for Megan England, who hit a slow roller to Kayla Skaggs at second base. Skaggs first thought about trying for the force at home, but Shull had gotten a good jump and was nearly to the plate when Skaggs fielded the ball.
Skaggs then thought about going to first, but it was already too late to get the speedy England and everyone was safe and the Cougars led 1-0.
With one out, catcher Jordan Decker singled up the middle to bring in Haley Brooks, who was a courtesy runner for Victoria Decker, and the lead jumped to 2-0.
The Cougars added another run after two were out in the second inning. Victoria Decker singled and was replaced on the bases once more by Brooks. Young followed by lacing a line drive to the fence in right-center field for a double, and Brooks was able to score all the way from first to make it 3-0.
After being retired in order in the third inning, the Cougars sent 11 batters to the plate in the fourth and punched out seven hits, good for seven runs as they put the game on ice.
A one-out single by Alanna Mudd started the rally. Shull and Victoria Decker followed with singles to load the bases. Three straight singles from Young, England and Claire Crawford produced three runs to make it 6-0.
Jordan Decker popped up for then second out, but a single by Amber Dotson produced two runs, and a double to the gap in right-centerby Ward brought in two more to make it 10-0 and set up the mercy-rule ending.