|FORGET SNOW, LET'S PLAY BALL...
The Covington Lady Buccs have been chomping at the bit to get the season started and it showed in a double-header sweep of Versailles.
SATURDAY, MARCH 30, 2013 - COVINGTON
Just this past Thursday, Covington softball coach Dean Denlinger spent three hours on the Lady Buccs' softball diamond - no, not conducting practice, but instead blowing snow off the diamond.
Which made it hard to believe Covington was able to get in a season-opening double-deader against Versailles on Saturday.
"It's hard to believe I was out here two days ago blowing snow," laughed Denlinger. "I'm glad I did. A lot of other fields in the area are probably unplayable today."
Thanks to Denlinger and some Saturday sun, the field was playable and Covington took advantage by sweeping the two games against the Lady Tigers by the score of 9-0 and 4-3.
"The girls were ready to play, to get the season started," said Denlinger. "The kids worked hard, our defense was solid and the focus was there."
And Covington waisted little time to get rolling in the first game of the double-header as senior Casey Yingst launched a two-run home run in her first at bat.
The Lady Buccs then scored a run in the third and followed with a six-run sixth inning to pull away for the 9-0 win.
Yingst went the distance on the mound, striking out 12 and surrounding just three hits and one walk.
The Lady Buccs then took a 4-0 lead into the top of the fifth inning of the second game, but Versailles battled back with two runs in the fifth and another in the sixth to make the Covington faithful uneasy.
But Yingst came in to relieve starter Morgan Arbogast and recorded the three outs needed in the top of the seventh to preserve the win.
Arbogast went five innings in the contest, struck out two batters and allowing just four hits. The Lady Buccs hurt themselves with one uncharacteristic error that Versailles was able to convert into a run.
"We're still trying to find ourselves, trying to find our identity," said Denlinger. "You know, it's easy to think when you lose one or two seniors from the year before that you are the same team, but we're not. We're an entirely different team than we were last year and we have to find our competitive edge."
And beating a quality team like Versailles in back-to-back games to start the season is a good start.
"They are a good team and will probably challenge in the MAC this year," Denlinger said of Versailles. "We hit the ball hard against them and used a lot of kids as courtesy runners. We had a lot of girls contribute against a good opponent."
Covington (2-0) continues to develop an identity as it hosts Anna on Tuesday.
GAME ONE SCORING BY INNINGS:
Versailles - 000 000 0 - 0-3-2
Covington - 201 006 x - 9-13-0
GAME TWO SCORING BY INNINGS:
Versailles - 000 021 0 - 3-5-2
Covington - 011 200 x - 4-9-1