By Huellen Watson \ Special to the Star
The Meridian Star
DECATUR — The Newton County High School softball team took advantage of an explosive offense to defeat Northeast Lauderdale High School 9-3 Thursday.
The Lady Cougar bats were hot all night, and Ashton Lampton led the Cougars with two doubles in the first and third innings.
“We faced a very good pitcher tonight, Lady Cougar coach Justin Chaney said. “We did what we do, and we just kept grinding it out. We made unselfish plays to move runners around and move runners in.”
Newton County had a big fifth inning, scoring three runs. Cassidy Blount connected with a triple to the center field wall to lead off the inning. Dalmericka King hit a single to score the runner. With two runners on, Savannah Gates laid down a bunt. She was called out at first but advanced runners to second and third. Shelby Barrett connected her bunt for a base hit and scored King at home, putting the Lady Cougars up 6-1 at the end of the fifth.
Northeast Lauderdale answered with scoring two runs in the top of the sixth. Madison McElroy scored on an error by King at third base. Kaytee Nelson hit a line drive to shallow right scoring Brittany Baty.
“I thought we played really well,” Northeast Lauderdale coach Sean Gerald said. “We executed well, Newton County just did it better, and they got the win tonight.”
The Lady Cougars answered with two runs of their own in the bottom of the sixth and held the Lady Trojans to three runs to earn the division win.
Darby Bishop was the winning pitcher for Newton. She struck out five batters and had no earned runs. Lampton came in as relief in the top of the sixth and held the Lady Trojans scoreless.
“This was a big division win for us,” Chaney said. “This puts us at 4-0 in division play. That will be big for us as we battle through the rest of the season.”
Newton County improves to 12-2 on the season. Northeast Lauderdale falls to 6-6 on the year and 2-1 in division play.