RACINE, Ohio — Back to even.
The Southern softball team had its three-game winning streak come to an end Monday night following a 9-4 setback to visiting Trimble in a Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division matchup at Star Mill Park in Meigs County.
The host Tornadoes (7-7, 5-5 TVC Hocking) rallied back from an early 3-0 deficit by scoring four times in the bottom of the third, but the Lady Tomcats (7-2, 7-2) countered with six unanswered runs over the final three frames — allowing THS to secure the five-run triumph.
The Red and Gray also claimed a season sweep of SHS after posting an 8-7 win in Glouster back on March 31.
Trimble opened up a 3-0 advantage in the top of the second after sending nine batters to the plate, which resulted in three runs on three hits, an error and a walk.
The score remained that way until the bottom of the third, when the hosts sent 10 batters to the plate. Katie Barton started things by reaching safely on a leadoff error, then Sydney Cleland received a walk.
Both runners moved up a base following a sacrifice by Haley Hill, then Ali Deem singled in both runners for a 3-2 deficit.
Hannah Hill and Paige VanMeter then reached safely on consecutive errors as Deem scored to tie the game, then Brandy Porter singled in Haley Musser — a courtesy runner for Cleland — as SHS claimed its only lead of the game at 4-3 through three complete.
The score remained that way until the top of the fifth as four hits and a walk allowed Trimble to score four times, giving the guests a 7-4 cushion. THS added two more runs in the seventh on three hits and three errors, which ultimately wrapped up the 9-4 outcome.
The Lady Tomcats outhit Southern by a 13-5 overall margin and both teams committed four errors in the contest. The guests left seven runners stranded on base, while the hosts left six on the bags.
Nikki Kish was the winning pitcher of record after allowing four runs (two earned), five hits and four walks over seven innings while striking out two. Sydney Cleland suffered the setback after surrendering nine runs (four earned), 13 hits and two walks over seven frames while fanning four.
Deem paced the Lady Tornadoes with two hits and two RBIs, while VanMeter, Barton and Porter also added a hit apiece in the setback. Deem, Barton, Musser and Hannah Hill also scored a run apiece for the hosts.
Ward led Trimble with four hits and Williams added three safeties, while Kish and Hardy each had two hits for the victors. Hardy also scored a team-best two runs and joined Dixon with two RBIs apiece.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.