Offense has truly been a team effort for the Harlan County Lady Bears during a 6-0 start this season.
Ten Lady Bears reached the hit column as part of a 14-hit effort in Harlan County’s 14-2 five-inning win over Letcher Central on Saturday afternoon, the sixth time in six games that HCHS has scored at least 10 runs.
“We stung the ball today. We have two or three coming off the bench stinging it,” Harlan County coach Tim McElyea said. “We played great good defense today and pitched well. Coaching is fun when this happens.”
Speedy sophomore center fielder Nikki Creech led the Harlan County offense with three singles in four at bats. Tia King and Haley Blakley each added two singles. Destinee Jenkins, Kacie Russell and Jessie Johnson contributed one double each. Farren Clark, Lainey Cox, Hannah Johnson and Kate Evans added one single each.
Jenkins (5-0) pitched a four-hitter with two strikeouts and one walk. The HCHS defense turned two double plays and made only one error.
The Harlan County offense started early as Creech singled with one out and scored on Russell’s RBI double. Cox followed with a single and scored on King’s two-run single. Blakley followed with an RBI single to left for a 4-0 lead.
The Lady Bears added seven runs in the second inning, highlighted by Jenkins bases-clearing double after singles by Hannah Johnson, Clark and Creech. King brought in a run with a ground out. Jessie Johnson doubled in two more runs for an 11-0 lead.
Blakley singled in two runs in the third inning after Russell reached base on an error and King singled. Kaitlin Evans added an RBI single for a 14-0 lead.
The Letcher offense came to life in the fourth inning as Savanna Parson singled and scored on Emily Johnson’s double. Megan Combs also had an RBI double. Brooklyn Collins and Bobbie Jean Collins had singles for Letcher in the fifth inning.
Harlan County (6-0) plays host to Bell County on Tuesday in its district opener.
“We’ve been swinging the bats great, but I want to see what we do against a real good arm,” McElyea said. “We’ll probably see that Thursday at Leslie County. We also have the Five Star Prep Showcase coming up.”
Letcher Central* 000* 22* — 2 5 4
Harlan County* 473* 0x* — 14 14 1
Collins and Wampler; Jenkins and King, Long (4). WP — Jenkins (5-0). LP — Collins.
Reach John Henson at 606-909-4134