Journal-Times (Grayson, KY)

July 3, 2013

Repeat ‘just as sweet’

By MacKenzie Bates - Sports Editor
Journal-Times

July 3, 2013 — The 9-10-year-old Olive Hill Softball All-Stars were in the same position as they were last year: Playing in the area championship with a chance to move onto the district championship.

It just so happens that history repeats itself.

The Olive Hill All-Stars used a hit parade as they claimed the second straight area title, defeating Fleming County 9-6 to move onto the district title against Ashland American.

“It’s very nice,” Manager Jeff Adkins said. “Last year we had a really good team but this year we had four or five younger girls and six new girls. They just hit the ball so well. Every kid from 1-10 had at least two hits. They’re great kids.”

The team clad in neon green and black got off to the best start they possibly could, striking for five runs in four hits in the first inning. Singles by Allie Stone, Isabella Shavers, Brittany McGlone and Kara Beth Jordan and a few errors by Fleming County allowed the fast start for Olive Hill.

“They like to hit and that’s all they like to do in practice. They don’t care too much on infield and it shows,” Adkins said. “I’m so proud.”

Fleming would take advantage of the base paths, scoring on a stolen base to get on the board in the bottom of the first. In the fourth inning with Olive Hill leading 7-1, a double by Fleming’s Sidney Argo plated two runs to make it 7-3. A fielder’s choice would cut Olive Hill’s lead to 7-4.

But behind the arm of Karianna Back really helped Olive Hill win its second straight crown. She pitched all six innings, only yielding one run in the victory. She accounted for more than a dozen strikeouts but issued several walks but Adkins said as long they came away with the victory, he does not mind.

“She throws so hard so you have to take the good with the bad like Bull Durham, so we’ll take it,” Adkins said. “She struck out 16 the first game but she had a lot of command. I was really happy with the way she pitched.”

Fleming would make things interesting in the bottom of the sixth, scoring two runs on a fielder’s choice and a beaten throw to the plate but Olive Hill just had enough to win the ballgame.

Allie Stone did what a leadoff hitter should do, going 4-for-4 at the plate with three singles and a double and scored three runs. Shavers went 2-for-3 with two RBI and Kallie Burchett had a couple of RBI as well. Brittany McGlone had a 1-for-3 performance at the plate with an RBI, and Kara Beth Jordan had a hit with an RBI. Ragan Adkins and Sara Oppenhimer each had an RBI.

Olive Hill moved onto the district championship Thursday against Ashland American.

MacKenzie Bates can be reached at mbates@journal-times.com or by telephone at 1-800-247-6142.