Chelsea claims high-scoring battle with Brookwood

Published 1:19 pm Thursday, February 22, 2024

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By ANDREW SIMONSON | Sports Editor

CHELSEA – The Chelsea Hornets got back on track as they took on the Brookwood Panthers in their home opener as the Hornets got the better of the two teams in a high-octane offensive showdown.

In the end, Chelsea claimed the 9-6 win on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at Chelsea High School to earn their second victory of the young season.

The pitchers settled in well in the first inning as neither team got a hit in the opening frame. Brookwood got a leadoff single in the top of the second inning, but the Hornets dispatched the next three batters to get out unscathed.

On the second pitch of the inning, Alaysha Crews hit a triple to right field to put Chelsea in scoring position.

Samantha Sutton reached base on an error on the next pitch, which set up Claire Purkey to score both Sutton and Crews to take a 2-0 lead.

After a scoreless third inning, the Hornets offense went on a roll to begin the bottom of the fourth inning. Sutton and Purkey hit back-to-back singles and Sadie Wilson earned a walk after an 11-pitch at-bat to load the bases.

Aubrey Ross then hit a line drive single to bring Sutton home and increase the lead to 3-0.

That lead quickly became four runs after Brookwood hit Makenna Harper with a pitch.

The scoring wouldn’t let up from there as each of the next three Chelsea batters scored a run. Kaitlin Hopson hit an RBI single for the fifth run, Lauren Hilyer earned a run on an RBI sacrifice fly and Hopson crossed home plate on an error by the Panthers catcher to end the inning.

That stretch of five straight scoring plays put the Hornets up 7-0 at the end of the fourth.

Chelsea dominated once again in the fifth inning as it loaded up the bases again on the first three batters. Wilson then reached on an error to score Crews from third for the eighth run.

On the next batter, a wild pitch let all three runners advance, including Aubrey Ross who scored from third to make the score 9-0.

Brookwood got on the board in the top of the sixth with its first run of the night and later plated five more runs in the top of the seventh inning to put the pressure on the Hornets in the final frame.

However, Chelsea secured the third and final out to earn the 9-6 victory.

Crews earned the victory with eight strikeouts in 6.1 innings. She allowed three earned runs, six hits and four walks.

The Hornets will look to make it back-to-back wins as they take on Pell City on Thursday, Feb. 22 at 5 p.m.