SOFTBALL: Lemon Bay, Charlotte, Port Charlotte all win Friday night

The Pirates came up big in both halves of the fifth inning for a District 6A-11 victory.

Trailing 3-0, the Gators loaded the bases with one out. However, Port Charlotte got out of the jam with no harm done. The Pirates then came up to the plate in the bottom of the inning and put four runs on the board to put the game away.

“We need to score every chance we get,” Port Charlotte coach Ryann Baker said. “So being able to score later in the game, which is something we haven’t done, that was the one thing I applauded them for doing.”

Port Charlotte took both district games from Island Coast this week in a home-and-home.

“Coming off last night (against Sarasota Booker), such an ugly loss and then having them come back in and not make any errors, it was really good to see,” said Baker, whose team suffered six errors in the loss to Booker that snapped a four-game winning streak.

PORT CHARLOTTE 7, IS. COAST 0
Island Coast 000 000 0 — 0 5 2
Port Charlotte 120 040 x — 7 8 0
WP: Seaaira Yiengst. LP: Riley Hare. Top hitter: (PC) Jaiden Dabney 2-4. Records: Island Coast 4-4, 2-4, Port Charlotte 5-7, 5-1.

Charlotte 11, North Port 1

PUNTA GORDA — Charlotte’S softball team combined 10 hits with four walks Friday night to rol to a 11-1 victory against North Port in a game shortened to five innings by the mercy rule.

After a scoreless first inning, Charlotte scored in each
of the next four innings. Kaylee Brannon ended the game with a two-run triple in the bottom of the fifth to set the final score.
Charlotte scored four in the second inning. After the Bobcats picked up their run in the top of the third, the Tarpons countered with two in the bottom.

Charlotte added three more in the fourth inning before ending the game on Brannon’s second hit of the game.

Winning pitcher Tiffany Dodson went 2-2 with 2 runs scored and 2 RBI’s. Her batterymate, Kaitlyn Hopper had a double and a single, scored twice and knocked in a run. Brannon also had a pair of hits and scored a run to go with her two RBI. Both Ashley Nelson and Nadia Playter went 2-for-3 to account for four of the six Bobcats hits.

CHARLOTTE 11, NORTH PORT 1
North Port 003 00 – 1 6
Charlotte 042 32 – 11 10
WP: Tiffany Dodson; LP: Ashley Nelson. Leading hitters: (NP) Ashley Nelson 2-3; Nadia Playter 2-3; (C) Tiffany Dodson 2-2, 2 runs, 2 RBI; Kaitlyn Hopper 2-3, 2 runs; Kaylee Brannon 2-4, run, 2 RBI.

LEMON BAY 6, LAKE PLACID 2

ENGLEWOOD — Lemon Bay’s softball team snapped seven-game losing streak at the right time Friday night by easing past Lake Placid, 6-2, in the District 5A-12 opener for both teams.

The Manta Rays jumped on top by scoring three times in the bottom of the second inning. Destiny Ashcroft drove in the first run with a single, and Bailey Grossenbacher followed with a two-run single to give Lemon Bay a lead it would never relinquish.

After the Green Dragons scored in the top of the fourth, the Mantas got the run back in the bottom of the inning on an RBI double by Kasi Shaffer.

Aimee Holt drove in the final two runs with a single in the bottom of the sixth inning. Lemon Bay had 11 hits to back Logan Johnson, who pitched the first five innings to pick up the win.  Grossenbacher came on to pitch the final two innings.

“It’s always better going into spring break with a win,” Lemon Bay coach Kim Pinkham said.  “Especially when we’ve been struggling. We’ve been preaching that we have to get a win in the district, so that was a good way to start. We had to fight throughout the game. We had a couple of mistakes they made that helped us out.

“But we definitely need to take advantage when we can because we had lots of opportunities and didn’t do anything with them. So we get a little bit of time off now, which is nice since people are tired. But we’ll come right back after it when we get back.”

LEMON BAY 6, LAKE PLACID 2
Lake Placid 000 100 1 — 2 6 3
Lemon Bay 030 102 x — 6 11 2
WP: Logan Johnson. Leading hitter: (LB) Bailey Grossenbacher 3-4, 2 runs, 2 RBI.

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