By Brandon Speck/NEMS Daily Journal
INGOMAR – Vardaman is taking its fastpitch series home with a lead. The Lady Rams beat Ingomar 12-3 Saturday in the Class 1A best-of-three series opener. Vardaman had 18 hits.
“We haven’t hit that way all year long. That’s the best we’ve hit all year,” Vardaman coach Billy Dill said. “We came out aggressive.”
Vardaman (13-12) scored five in the first, four of its five singles in a row. Ingomar had two errors in the inning that plated runs and Cheyenne McKiney, Sydney Huffman and Ashley Wooten drove in runs. McKiney drove in two more in the second.
Game 2, and 3 if necessary, is scheduled for Monday.
“They did hit the ball well,” Ingomar coach Kevin Williams said. “We left a lot of pitches over the plate, good hard line drives and we couldn’t answer with our bats.”
Ingomar (13-11) got two back in the bottom of the first on four walks – Lauren Koon was hit by a pitch – and Mallory Adair’s fielder’s choice drove in Heather Dillard. But the Lady Falcons left the bases loaded in the second inning.
Vardaman made it 9-2 in the fourth on Whittney Gee’s RBI single and Laken Lucius’ RBI.
“Hitting hasn’t been our strong point but we’re coming around now when we need it,” said Gee, who had four hits.
Vardaman tacked on three insurance runs in the seventh.
Wooten had an RBI single, Stacie Haimes a fielder’s choice and Laci Jo Fugett an RBI single. Dillard’s backwards catch at short ended the inning.
Vardaman pitcher Grace Edmondson walked six, but struck out seven and had four of her team’s 18 hits. Erin Wall (7-6) took the loss for Ingomar.
“She fought through it,” Dill said. “She struggled for a long time but overcame it and we backed her up with hitting.”
Every playoff series Vardaman has won under Dill in seven seasons started with a Game 1 win.