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Rebels cover all the bases to cover bases against

April 10, 2007|by DAN KAUFFMAN

Hitting. Pitching. Defense. South Hagerstown's softball team did all of them well on a chilly Monday evening.

Desiree Giffin and Brittany Hyatt each homered to back the pitching of Chelsea Showe, who went the distance as the Rebels defeated Clear Spring 9-3 in an MVAL Antietam contest.

The top three hitters in the lineup for South (3-2, 2-1) - Giffin, Hyatt and Bri Hammond - combined for seven RBI and six runs. They sparked a four-run first inning off Clear Spring starter Christina Mehaffie that gave the Rebels control against the Blazers (1-3, 0-3).

"I've been telling them all year that we need to start games strong," South coach Angie McQuillen said. "This is the first time we've scored that many runs in the first inning."

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Giffin led off the bottom of the first inning with a solo homer to left, and also singled in the sixth and scored on Hyatt's two-run homer to left center.

Hyatt finished with three RBI and Bri Hammond added two hits and three RBI, including a two-run double in the fourth inning.

"The majority of our hits come from the top of our lineup," McQuillen said. "When we get hits from the bottom, it's nice, but we don't expect them to set the table."

No. 9-hitter Jodi Sneckenberger had two hits and scored twice, while Mallory White drove in a run with her first-inning single for the Rebels.

"We're hitting the ball better than we did at the start of last season," McQuillen said.

"They definitely were prepared to play," Clear Spring coach Ron Baker said of the Rebels. "We knew coming down here that South had a good team. They did what they had to do in the batter's box and we didn't. ... When you only score three runs against South, you have to score more runs. You have to score with them."

The Blazers matched South's nine hits but left 10 runners on base as Showe worked her way out of some jams. The Rebels sophomore proved to be deceptive, with her arm speed significantly faster than the speed of her pitches, which threw Clear Spring hitters off. Showe finished with eight strikeouts and three walks.

"She did a great job," McQuillen said. "She threw strikes and we played defense behind her. She did her job."

"She mixed it up and threw the way she had to," Baker said. "We're not used to hitting pitches like hers. She definitely had control of her throws."

Kory Atherton and Ashley Shaff each had two hits for Clear Spring.

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