Tough loss can’t slow Lady Miners

BAUXITE – The Bauxite Lady Miners softball team came close to having a perfect opening week of the season, but the Glen Rose Lady Beavers made sure that didn’t happen. With the Lady Miners up 7-1 after the fourth inning, Glen Rose came back to defeat Bauxite 9-7 in extra innings last Monday in Bauxite. Bauxite took the next two games of the week with ease, defeating Mayflower 15-2 on Tuesday and shutting out Poyen 10-0 on Friday.

Bauxite senior starting pitcher Bethany Edwards had a no-hitter through four innings against the Lady Beavers, but Glen Rose freshman Hannah Thornton finished 3 for 5 with four RBIs hitting a double and a triple to help in the Lady Beavers comeback.

“We’re kind of young,” Bauxite Coach Wes Mode said. “It was kind of a tale of two games. They didn’t lead until the eighth inning, but that’s when it counts the most I guess.”

The Lady Beavers finished with 11 hits after being held without one through the first four innings, and the Lady Miners didn’t get a hit after the fourth inning.

The Lady Miners (2-1) bounced back in their matchup against host Mayflower the next day when junior left fielder Denise Harp provided seven RBIs in Bauxite’s 15-2 win over Mayflower. Harp hit a grand slam while going 2 for 4. She added a double and scored three runs.

Sophomore Kati Daley, junior Allie Beech and Edwards each went 3 for 4 with three runs scored against Mayflower, while sophomore Amy Etheridge went 1 for 4 with a double and three RBIs. Senior Shelby Durbin went 2 for 4 with a double, a run and an RBI.

Against Poyen, the Lady Miners had little problem and scored in every inning, as Edwards went again for Bauxite and pitched a shutout while striking out 11 and giving up just one hit against the Lady Indians.

Harp added two more RBIs to finish the week with 10. Harp also had three doubles and eight runs for the week while hitting .500.

Along with leading the team in hitting with a .750 average through the first three games, Edwards pitched every inning for the Lady Miners going 2-1 with a 2.95 ERA. She struck out 29 batters in just 19 innings pitched, and held her opponents to a .216 batting average.

Mode talked about how he is going to rely on Edwards, a four-year starter, as his main pitcher and that she will start every game.

“She can throw over 60 [mph] easy,” he said. “She can bring it, but I call her a pitcher. She doesn’t just throw it. She locates it good, she knows how to pitch to batters. It’s one thing to throw it hard, but you have to know where to put it as well. She’s experienced.”

Along with his experienced pitching, Mode said he was happy with the Lady Miners defense as they had just three errors in the three games last week. Happy for the most part with his team’s performance the opening week, Mode said he is still piecing together a lineup because he got some of his players late because the basketball team made it to the postseason.

“I was late getting all my girls because the basketball team made regionals,” Mode said. “I was somewhat pleased. I thought we might struggle a little more. But like I told my girls, I want them playing well when conference rolls around. We kind of got a little while to iron some things out.”

Conference play won’t start until after spring break and the Lady Miners play next on Thursday when they host the FCA Tournament which starts Wednesday. Bauxite will play the winner of Hot Springs and Jessieville on Thursday at 6:20 p.m.