By Gene Phelps/NEMS Daily Journal
PONTOTOC – Tupelo has played well early in the season under first-year coach William Stafford – with one exception – Saturday’s loss to a batting buzz saw named East Webster.
The Lady Wolverines cranked out 21 hits, including five from outfielder Autumn Frost, to defeat the Lady Wave 13-1 in high school slow-pitch softball in the South Pontotoc Tournament.
Tupelo (6-2), which defeated Houlka 12-1 earlier in the day, managed just six hits in its loss.
East Webster (9-0) defeated Saltillo 17-4 in its second tournament game.
“We didn’t play so well in that one,” Stafford said, moments after having a lengthy pep talk with his team. “Things just didn’t fall our way. East Webster’s a good team. They can hit the ball.
“I’m confident in our team. They’ll bounce back.”
The Lady Wave will need to be at the top of its game, starting Monday when they host 3A power Mooreville. On Tuesday, Tupelo opens 6A division play against visiting Grenda.
“We’ve got some big games coming up,” Stafford said. “Playing Mooreville on Monday will show us the level of competition we’ll face Tuesday (against Grenada).”
Frost and Madison Flemmings had RBI singles in the first inning to give East Webster a 2-0 lead.
Tupelo answered in the bottom of first, scoring one run – Reagan Aldridge who had singled – on a sacrifice fly by Katie Rieves.
The Lady Wave went down in order the next four innings.
East Webster extended its lead with a three-run second inning, highlighted by Frost’s two-run single. Frost added a two-run double to right-center field in the fifth to give her five RBI.
Mamie Hollenhead, Kendall Wilkinson and Allaina Hill all had doubles for the Lady Wolverines.
Frost hit a three-run homer in East Webster’s win against Saltillo.
“Frost has got some pop in her bat,” said first-year East Webster coach Lee Berryhill. “We hit the ball well today. We kept getting hits and turning the order over.”