It's been a good two weeks to be a Lady Raider. Three Rivers swept MCC Maple Woods on Sunday, completing a four-game sweep of the Lady Monarchs and improving to 12-1 since March 15 while climbing to the top of the Region XVI standings. Three Rivers won Sunday's opener 7-1 and the nightcap 8-5. The Lady Raiders are three games ahead of Jefferson in the Region XVI standings. Nobody else has a winning record in region play. "You start winning games and instead of being the person you overlook, now you have a target on your back. They are going to come after us … now we have to learn how to play with that kind of pressure. I'm looking forward to it," Three Rivers coach Jeff Null said. Summer Shockley (13-3) struck out nine while allowing five hits and three walks in a complete-game win in the opener. She allowed a run in the top of the first inning, and didn't give up two hits to any Monarch. "They scored on a mistake pitch and she didn't make many mistakes the rest of the way," Null said. The Lady Raiders (21-8, 9-1 Region XVI) tied the game in the bottom of the first and added a run in the second and third innings to give Shockley the early lead. They scored two more in both the fifth and sixth innings. Kristyn Carpenter had a home run, her fourth of the season, that cruised past the wall in left and hit the batting cages 3/4 of the way up. "It was the biggest bomb I've seen so far," Null said. Ally Law was 2 for 2 with two runs and Kirstien Loman had two RBIs.
Allison Pingel hit a pair of home runs in the nightcap, giving her 11 for the season. Pingel went into the day tied for eighth in singleseason home runs for Three Rivers. With the two dingers, she eclipsed a four-way tie at 10 home runs and is now tied for third with Jessica Menz and is one back of Abby Tillotson. Destiny Bolen, who graduated in 2016, holds the single-season record with 15 and the career record with 22. With 11 home runs, Pingel is already fifth in career home runs. With 50 RBIs, Pingel is also fifth in singleseason RBIs and 12 shy of the record. Pingel was 3 for 4 with three runs and three RBIs to power Three Rivers in the nightcap. Leadoff hitter Randi Scruggs was 2 for 3 with two runs and Gracie King, who hits in front of Pingel, was 2 for 4 with a run. "(Scruggs and Carpenter) at the top of the lineup are as tough as anybody around. They just set the table for the middle of our order and the middle is taking care of business," Null said. Three Rivers had a 4-1 lead after one inning and was ahead 7-2 going into the sixth. Maple Woods (11-11, 5-5) scored three runs late off relief pitcher Carleigh Burnett, who allowed three hits and two walks with three strikeouts. Macy Rogers (6-1) got her third win in as many days. She pitched four innings and allowed one hit and a walk with five strikeouts. Rogers went 10 days without an appearance because of an injury, then returned in the nightcap win against Crowder on Friday.
Scott Borkgren - Daily American Republic