Panthers start season with shutout against Prattville

Published 12:11 am Friday, February 21, 2014

By JORDON SEMIEN/For the Reporter

PELHAM — After months of preparation and anticipation, the Pelham Panthers Softball team kicked off their season in dominant fashion, shutting out the visting Prattville Lions 10-0.

The Panthers started their trek back to the state finals after finishing last season as runner up to Sparkman by sending UAB commit Rebekah Fox to the mound for the opening act.

After a one, two, three top of the first and then allowing an early Prattville hit in the bottom, Fox retired the Lions side in quick fashion.

On offense, Panther catcher Madi Walker stepped to the plate with the bases loaded in the bottom of the second. Facing a full count pitch, Walker found a gap in the shallow left infield for a base hit and RBI, bringing in shortstop Caitlyn Sapp. The run counted as Kristian Foster tried to add to the lead from second base, but was caught at the plate for the third out of the inning.

The Panthers took a 1-0 lead and never looked back. Fox was dominating on the hill as she worked her way through the Lions line up. She finished with five strikeouts and one walk on her way to a complete game shutout.

After falling behind early, the wheels fell off for the Lions as their pitching staff combined to allow 10 hits and 8 RBI’s on the night.

Pelham’s offense was just as potent as their pitching, led by Senior Emily Spain’s 2-for-3 batting night and four RBIs, matched by fellow senior Krista Shirley’s two RBIs and freshman Mekhi Mayfield’s third inning triple to lead the Panthers to a 10-o shutout.

After the game, Pelham head coach Amy Sullivan said she was happy to get the first game of the year done and work out the opening day jitters.

“The best thing we could do is just get on the field and make our mistakes and then come back and fix them tomorrow,” she said. “Honestly, Becky is a great pitcher. She’s been pitching for us since she was in the eighth grade. We honestly didn’t expect anything less.”

The Panthers move on to face Stanhope Elmore on Feb. 25.