Huge fourth inning propels Bluejackets to 13-1 win over Crawford County

By Noah Dalton

MITCHELL – Wednesday night’s matchup, another Patoka Lake Athletic Conference battle, this time against Crawford County, saw Mitchell pick up their second-straight win after the previous night’s win over Eastern Greene, marking the first time this season the time has been able to win back-to-back games.

Their win over the Wolfpack was earned in commanding fashion, putting them away 13-1 in five innings due to the 10-run mercy rule.

They began the night trailing Crawford County, after giving up a run in the first inning, when Marley Berg drew a bases-loaded walk with two outs to force home a runner.

The Bluejackets found their rhythm in the bottom of the second. With two outs recorded, they took the lead with back-to-back RBI doubles from Aktyn Brown and Paisley Modglin. They kept it going, batting in another run, this time on a single from Alyssa Young. In the next at-bat, an error from Crawford County allowed Page Mullis to score from third.

Alyssa Young follows a fly ball during an at-bat against Crawford County

Quickly, the tables had turned, with Mitchell now in the driver’s seat with a 4-1 lead.

After a scoreless third from both sides, the Bluejackets’ offense found another gear in the fourth inning, posting nine runs to the board, crossing the 10-run threshold that would ultimately give them an early victory.

They began the inning by putting their first seven hitters on base with a mix of walks and hits, scoring five runs before the Wolfpack were able to obtain an out.

The first run was batted in by Young on a single to center field that came with the bags loaded up. They bases were then cleared in the next at-bat, a double from Davaney Roop, which gave way for all three runners to score, with an error on the throw home giving her a clear path home for another run on the same play.

Davaney Roop and Aktyn Brown celebrate a run against Crawford County

After a base hit from Emma Chastain and an error that put Natalee Nissley on first, Crawford County got some relief in the form of consecutive outs, but that calm was short-lived, with Mitchell hanging three more runs on them, with Chastain scoring via another error, and RBIs from Modglin and Mullis, before they could retire the side.

Speaking about her team’s impressive fourth inning outing, Bluejackets head coach Christa Mullis they were able to adjust their timing accordingly, an adjustment that they’ve struggled with at times throughout the season.

“I think they started getting it timed up. We’ve kind of battled all season with trying to get our adjustments in the the batter’s box. We did that, we got ourselves ready mentally and I think we just started to deliver on the hits, so that’s what kind of turned it around,” she said.

The Wolfpack entered the top of the fifth needing to score with the mercy rule, which dictates that a game end if one team leads by at-least 10 runs after five innings, looming over. They seemed poised to do so, loading up the bases with two outs again for Berg, they same recipe that put them onto the scoreboard in the first inning.

Karsyn Coleman throws a pitch against Crawford County

This time, the result was a four-pitch strikeout from sophomore Karsyn Coleman, finishing her complete game and putting away Crawford County for the Bluejackets’ second conference win of the year.

Coming off pitching the previous night against Eastern Greene, where she earned her 100th career strikeout, Coleman added 10 more Ks to her tally during her time at the mound, giving up four hits and one earned run.

Mullis credited her performance, as well as the leadership from senior Page Mullis, as keys to the win.

“I want to put some spotlight on Karsyn Coleman, she’s a sophomore and she had her 100th strikeout last night for her high school career. That was pretty big deal there. But really, she’s just been a workhorse for us and allowing our other pitchers not to work so much and play some defense for us. So, really a big shout out to her and our senior Page Mullis, who is really the leader of this team,” she said.

Page Mullis connects with a pitch against Crawford County

It has been an up and down start to the season for this young Mitchell team (4-6), who graduated seven seniors after last year. Because of that, Mullis said her expectations for this year have been consistent improvement and a noticeable effort from her players, which has shown throughout, even in some of the tougher losses.

“We are a very young team, so my expectations, I told them I don’t really care about wins and losses. I really don’t. I want to see these girls compete,” she said.

“We’ve had two games where we’ve not scored any runs, but I still saw improvements. I still saw adjustments they made that we’re plugging away on. I mean that’s exactly what I expected out of the season. I expected some hard work. I expected some grit and that’s exactly what they’re getting.”