POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — Two big innings led to one grand outcome.
The Point Pleasant softball team rallied back from an early two-run deficit by scoring five times in the third and tacking on four more runs in the sixth while remaining unbeaten with a 9-4 victory over visiting Parkersburg South on Thursday night during a non-conference contest in Mason County.
The Lady Knights (3-0) trailed 1-0 after an inning and were down 2-0 headed into the bottom of the third, but the hosts responded with five big runs that were also aided by a trio of PSHS errors. From there, PPHS ultimately led the rest of the way.
The Lady Patriots mustered a run apiece in the fourth and fifth frames to cut the deficit down to 5-4 through five complete, but Point answered by sending nine batters to the plate in the bottom half of the sixth — which resulted in four runs that more than doubled the lead.
Parkersburg South went down in order in the top of the seventh, allowing PPHS to remain perfect midway through the first week of the season.
The Lady Patriots took a 1-0 lead as Alexis Fieck doubled home Rebecca Haguewood with one out in the first, then a bases loaded walk to Kelly Amos allowed Haguewood to cross home plate for a 2-0 edge midway through the third.
Point Pleasant, however, found its offensive rhythm in the bottom of the third as Kelsie Byus started things with a one-out triple, then Byus scored one batter later on a Leah Cochran double that led to a 2-1 contest.
Tanner King followed by reaching first base safely on an error as Cochran advanced to third, then Kelsey Price reached on an error that allowed Cochran to score as Byus advanced to third. A throwing error on a double steal attempt allowed King to score and Price moved over to third, giving Point a permanent lead at 3-2.
Megan Hammond followed with a single that plated Price for a 4-2 edge, but Hammond was the victim of a force out at second as Lila Beattie reached first safely on a fielder’s choice. Cammy Hesson followed with a double to left-center that allowed Beattie to score, making it a 5-2 contest through three complete.
PSHS got a run back in the fourth as an error allowed Allie Taylor to score for a 5-3 contest, then Taylor doubled home Kelly Amos in the fifth to cut the deficit down to 5-4.
The score remained that way until the bottom of the sixth as Peyton Jordan started things with a one-out single, then advanced to third on a sacrifice by Michaela Cottrill.
Byus singled in Jordan for a 6-4 lead, then Shala Swain entered as a pinch-runner for Byus. Cochran followed with a two-run shot to straight-away centerfield, which allowed the Lady Knights to double their cushion out to 8-4.
King followed with a single and Hannah Smith entered as a courtesy runner, then Kelsey Price drew a walk to put runners at first and second with two away.
Hammond again delivered an RBI with a single to shallow right field that plated Smith, completing the scoring at 9-4.
The Lady Knights outhit the guests by a 13-8 overall margin and committed only two of the six errors in the contest. Both teams also stranded eight runners apiece on base.
Jordan was the winning pitcher of record after allowing four runs (three earned), seven hits and and two walks over four-plus innings while striking out three. Karson Bonecutter worked the final three innings for PPHS, surrendering only one hit while fanning three.
Madison Cox took the loss for Parkersburg South after allowing five runs (one earned), seven hits and a walk over three innings while striking out one. Megan Ellis gave up four earned runs, six hits and a walk in three innings of relief work.
Cochran led Point Pleasant with three hits, three RBIs and a pair of runs scored. Byus, King, Hammond and Hesson were next with two safeties apiece, while Jordan and Beattie also had a hit each for the victors.
Haguewood, Fieck and Allie Taylor paced the Lady Patriots with two hits apiece, while Graham and Sarah Huffman also had a safety each.
Point Pleasant will host Logan on Friday at 5:30 p.m., then the Lady Knights host both Nitro and Lincoln County in a Saturday doubleheader at noon.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.