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Youth served on Panthers

May 17, 2002|BY BILL STERNER / Staff Correspondent

Staff Correspondent

HANCOCK - Perhaps someone should alert Beall's Katie Rephann to the fact that it isn't supposed to be this way, that freshman are expected to revere upperclassmen and wait for their own moment in the sun.

Seems that's about the only aspect of the game she has not mastered.

Lacking experience but hardly short on guile, the Mountaineer freshman pitched out of two bases-loaded situations late in the game as Beall advanced with a 4-1 win over Hancock Thursday in the Class 1A West semifinals.

Beall (13-3) won a game between the two freshman-dominated teams after splitting the season series.

Rephann kept the Panthers off the plate for five innings while heavy-hitting Angie Johnson made her presence felt, smacking two doubles and driving in three runs late in the game.

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"Angie had been in a bit of a hitting funk," Beall coach Martha Mauzy said. "We were certainly glad to see her bat wake up today."

Beall struck first in the third inning. Jackie Aylor led off with a single, stole second and scored on an Amy Williams double to left.

"We have talked before about how important that first run is," Hancock coach Heather Creek said. "We were helping (Rephann) a little at the plate with our impatience. But we settled in after that."

The Panthers got Alicia Barnard to third base with one out in the bottom of the fourth, but Rephann got a harmless fly ball and a strikeout to retire the side.

In the top of the fifth, Hancock pitcher Katie Golden cruised through the first two hitters, but then found trouble. Aylor singled to left and went to third on Williams' single - both on full-count pitches.

A wild pitch scored Aylor, and Johnson followed with the first of her two doubles to score Williams for a 3-0 game.

"We were just short of closing them out on a couple of different hitters," Creek said. "Katie worked hard in there, but they are very patient with the bats."

Hancock (13-8) plated its only run in the sixth. Kate Pittman tripled to right and scored on Barnard's sacrifice fly to the fence in center field.

The Panthers then loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh with two outs, but Barnard's hard shot down the line at third was deftly fielded by Kasey Kahl, who just got Barnard at first for the final out.

"I know these kids coming back got a taste this year," Creek said. "I was in the same spot as them. It makes you hungry. We will be all that much harder to beat now."

Beall 4, Hancock 1

Beall 0010201-471

Hancock 0000010-162

Rephann and Wilson. Golden and Chiarrutini. WP-Rephann. LP-Golden (13-7).

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