Bears pick up where they left off

Published 9:26 pm Thursday, February 19, 2009

One year removed from the most successful season in program history, Billingsley appears poised to accomplish even more.

The Bears in 2008 made the sub-state round of the playoffs for the first time. This year’s edition—which lost to graduation only one player, shortstop Amy Raines—began its campaign Thursday with a 12-2, six-inning win over Indian Springs.

The Bears looked shaky early. Two walks and an error in the top of the first inning allowed two runs to score, and the top of the Billingsley lineup couldn’t threaten in the bottom of the inning.

But Billingsley found its form in the second: Pitcher Summer Gaither struck out the side, and the Bears struck for three runs on two hits.

Hannah Horton (1/4, RBI, run) struck out to lead off the half-inning but reached base because strike three got past the Indian Springs catcher.

One out later, Mary Beth Walker (2/2, 2 RBI, 2 runs) ripped a run-scoring double. Walker scored on a wild pitch but not before Jaime Williams (1/2, RBI, run) hit safely.

An RBI triple off the bat of Emily Thomas (2/4, RBI, run) put the hosts up 3-2, and they would never trail again.

The first five batters in the Billingsley third reached base with the help of two Indian Springs errors, and the Bears led 8-2 and put the game away.

Billingsley scored four runs in the sixth to end the game via mercy rule.

Indian Springs’ Casey Stewart suffered the loss.

Gaither dominated after the first inning and earned the win. She allowed only two hits the rest of the way and struck out nine for the game.