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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Lady Panthers cruise after explosive start

  • The last time Cedar Ridge came to Heber Springs they won the lower division of an invitational tournament. They weren’t as fortunate on Tuesday as the Lady Panthers sent 14 batters to the plate while scoring nine runs in the first inning of an 11-1, five-inning blowout.

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  • The last time Cedar Ridge came to Heber Springs they won the lower division of an invitational tournament. They weren’t as fortunate on Tuesday as the Lady Panthers sent 14 batters to the plate while scoring nine runs in the first inning of an 11-1, five-inning blowout.
    Heber pitcher McKenzie Cresswell worked around a leadoff double by Teia Moore in the top of the first inning as she struck out the second batter before issuing a walk to Tosh Lovell. Cresswell then induced a fly ball handled by Mackenzie Martin in center and a grounder taken by Alexis Ingram at shortstop, ending the top half with two runners stranded.
    Facing Cedar Ridge starting pitcher Tori Moore, the Lady Panthers erupted with nine runs on five hits in the bottom of the first. Skye Miller walked to start the onslaught and she stole her way around to third then scored on a throwing error, quickly giving Heber a 1-0 lead.
    Ingram also walked and stole her way around to third before Sarah Peeler roped an RBI single to left field, scoring Ingram for a 2-0 lead. After Hannah Mangum walked, Sam Temple laced a 2 RBI double to deep left field, plating Peeler and Mangum.
    Leading 4-0, Courtney Verser lined a single to right field and Cresswell walked, which loaded the bases for Skylar Johnson, who was hit-by-a-pitch, scoring Temple and forcing Cedar Ridge to relieve Moore with Trish Grissom.
    Grissom retired the first two batters she faced, including one by strikeout, but Ingram kept the Lady Panthers’ inning alive by slamming a 2 RBI single to center field, plating Cresswell and Johnson as Heber’s lead grew to 8-0.
    Peeler drilled a single down third base line then Mangum’s pop-up turned into an error, which allowed Ingram to score for a 9-0 lead. Grissom finally got out of the jam when Temple bounced out to Mill Talley at third base.
    Cresswell pitched around a leadoff double by Whit Wood in the top of the second as she sat down the next three batters, including two by strikeout, leaving Wood stranded at third.
    Heber added a run in the bottom of the second as Cresswell reached on a one-out walk and Martin nailed a two-out single up the middle before Miller roped an RBI single to center field, scoring Cresswell and pushing the Lady Panthers lead to 10-0 entering the third frame.
    Cedar Ridge scored its only run in the top half of the third when Talley hammered an RBI double off the base of the wall in left field, scoring Grissom, who reached on a one-out walk.
    With the bases loaded and two out, Cresswell used a filthy changeup for a strikeout, ending the top half with Heber leading 10-1. Grissom worked around singles by Mangum and Verser in the bottom of the third.
    Page 2 of 2 - Cresswell retired the Lady ’Wolves in order in the top of the fourth but Grissom faced the minimum in the bottom half. In the top of the fifth, Cedar Ridge attempted to stir up a rally as Grissom reached by error and Talley singled but Cresswell responded with a strikeout. With two runners in scoring position and two out, Cresswell induced Wood into a grounder to first base, where Temple flipped to Verser covering the bag to complete the third out.
    Heber quickly placed the 10-run rule into effect by scoring a run in the bottom of the fifth as Ingram ripped a single to center and stole second before pinch-hitter Peyton Vinyard drilled an RBI double to the alley in left center, scoring Ingram as the Lady Panthers capped a nonconference victory.
    Ingram led Heber (16-8) with two hits, three runs and four RBIs. Peeler added two hits, two runs and an RBI, Verser also contributed a pair of hits and Temple drove home two runs. Miller, Mangum and Johnson each scored a run and had an RBI.
    Cresswell improved to 6-0 as the Lady Panthers’ starting pitcher. She limited Cedar Ridge to four hits and two walks while striking out six.
    After hosting Stuttgart for its final 2-4A conference game on Thursday, the Lady Panthers welcome Mountain View today for a nonconference game. Heber wraps up regular season play next Tuesday with a home game against Harding Academy. Opening pitch for both games is scheduled for 4:30 p.m.
     

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