By KIM NELSON
HILLSVILLE–For four innings it looked as if this contest was going to be a close one. Heading into the fifth, Carroll County held a 6-3 advantage, but following a rough fifth inning for Pulaski County, the Cavaliers claimed a 12-3 win over the Cougars.
Both teams put a run on the scoreboard in the opening inning as Callie Ratcliffe doubled to open the game. A ground out moved her to third and another one by Ashley Curtis plated Ratcliffe.
The Cougars’ other two runs came in the third off of three consecutive errors by the Cavaliers to put Ratcliffe, Chelsey Gravely and Curtis on base. Kayla Price then belted a two-run double up the middle to score Ratcliffe and Gravely. However, Curtis and Price was left stranded on base.
Carroll County scored one run in the first off of a bunt, stolen base, passed ball and wild pitch. The Cougars seemed to settle down. In the third, the Patriots plated five runs off of two doubles, a single, a walk, an error and a stolen base, to make it 6-3.
The Cavaliers put the game away in the fifth as they scored five more runs off two doubles, two singles, a walk, and two Cougar errors.
Cougar hurler Callie Ratcliffe (1-2) took the loss. She worked 4 1/3 innings. She gave up 10 runs (six earned) on nine hits. She walked three and struck out two. Jade Murray came on the fifth to give up two runs. She walked two and struck out two across 1 2/3 innings.
The Cavaliers final run came in the sixth when Kendall Hiatt ripped a triple to right. A ground out and two walks plated their final run.
The Cougars finished with five hits on the day. Price, Caitie Cox, Taylor Robertson, Katie Akers, and Ratcliffe accounted for one hit each.
The Cougars, now 1-2, will begin district play on Tuesday when they travel to Christiansburg.