Records fall as No.3 Stars jolt Jennings County

NORTH VERNON – BNL celebrates after Ava Ratliff broke the school’s record for career home runs. The No.3 Stars stopped Jennings County 7-0 on Thursday. Courtesy photo

NORTH VERNON – Records continue to fall faster than a meteorite in the atmosphere as Class 4A No.3 Bedford North Lawrence took another mega-step toward defending their Hoosier Hills Conference championship.

Annie Waggoner broke her own single-game school record with 19 strikeouts, and Ava Ratliff shattered the school record for career home runs as the Stars smacked Jennings County 7-0 on Thursday. BNL (18-5) improved to 4-0 in the league, with two huge conference battles looming next week.

Waggoner (12-3) was overpowering. The Panthers managed only two hits, both singles, and only two other balls were hit in play. And speaking of power, Ratliff blasted two homers, giving her 15 this season and 36 in only 64 games the last two years. She already ranks in the top 10 for career home runs in state history.

BNL’s Aliza Jewell also cranked a home run, while Ratliff and Kendall Graves (two doubles) collected three hits each. Braxton McCauley added two hits.

“We hit real well,” BNL coach Brad Gilbert said. “Even our outs were hard outs. Just up and down the lineup, we hit well, a lot of positive, quality at-bats. We had timely hitting. It was a great team effort.”

The Stars got started with three runs in the first. Lauryn Anderson led off with a single, and Ratliff hammered her first blast to left. McCauley doubled and Graves added a two-out RBI double later in the frame.

In the third, Ratliff singled, pinch runner Britta Warren stole second, and McCauley ripped a RBI single. After a Jennings error led to another run in the fourth, Ratliff and Jewell launched homers in the seventh.

“You have to be thrilled with the way we’re playing,” Gilbert said. “We’re right where we want to be. We’re talking about playing for a conference championship. Just an outstanding offensive performance.”

BNL will host Bloomington North and Corydon in a split doubleheader on Friday night.