After a rough run through their spring break tournament, the Taft varsity softball team were looking forward to returning to the South Sequoia League schedule. Hope turned into reality in Delano Tuesday afternoon when the Lady Wildcats blew past the Cesar Chavez 16-3.
“The girls played very well yesterday,” said Taft coach Russell Emberson. “We hit the ball very well and played good defense for all but one inning.”
With the victory, Taft improves to 12-6 overall and 3-0 in league play.
Taft started making noise in the top of the first inning. After Halle Neher and Hayley Tracy reached on back-to-back singles and Caitlyn Emberson was hit by a pitch, all three scored on passed balls.
The Lady Wildcat offense came to life again in the fourth inning . Following an error and Johanna Wilke’s sacrifice bunt, Kelsey Wilmer hit a one out single. Arizona Pilgrim went on to score on a passed ball before Neher reached on a fielder’s choice. After a hit batter, Emberson capped the rally with a two out run scoring single.
Taft opened the floodgates in the sixth inning by scoring six runs. Neher led off the charge with a one out single before Tracy hit a two run home run. Emberson followed with a solo home run while Davis singled and Kelley reached on an error.
Pilgrim capped the scoring outburst going with a three run home run.
Cesar Chavez finally broke through with a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. However, Taft countered with five runs in the seventh inning, highlighted by Emberson’s three run home run.
Emberson led the charge in the game by going 3-for-3 with three runs scored, two home runs and five runs batted in. Neher was 2-for-5 with two singles and four runs scored. Tracy was 2-for-3 with three runs scored and two runs batted in.
Davis and Pilgrim each were 1-for-5 with Pilgrim driving in three runs and scoring twice. Meanwhile, Davis scored a run. Corie Evans and Kelley each were 1-for-4 with a run scored. Evans also had a run batted in. Wilmer was 1-for-3 with a single.
Pilgrim tossed a complete game four hitter (allowing three singles and a home run). Pilgrim also struck out 14 batters.
Taft will look to sweep the Lady Titans Friday when they host Cesar Chavez. The game begins at 4 p.m.