TAYLOR COUNTY— After an opening day loss, the 11U Base Invaders team coached by Julie Dowdy, Rachel Gerkin, Sam Gerkin and Becky Phillips, have found their stride and are on a three-game winning streak.
Entering two back-to-back contests on Sunday, April 10 and another on Wednesday, April 13 the teamwork of this Base Invaders group only allowed eight runs to be scored over the span of the three games.
First on Sunday, was a matchup against a team from Gilmer County.
With Olivia Barker on the mound pitching, and Braelynn Jones manning the catcher’s position, the Base Invaders jumped out to an early lead, as Makala White would get things started offensively with an in-the-park homerun.
During the opening inning, Adree Wiles, Jones, Brakelle Strum and Jaydence Garica would also round home plate for the Base Invaders.
Gilmer was able to bring one home to bring the score to 5-1 at the bottom of the first.
While Gilmer would put up another run in the second, the Base Invaders didn’t let up and tallied three more runs during the frame from Harper Gerkin, Victoria Drainer and Jenna Smith.
As the game trend continued, Hannah Dowdy and Sturm each scored a run for the Base Invaders during the third inning. However, the inning would see better luck for Gilmer, as they ran in five before going into the fourth.
Entering the final inning with the score sitting at 10-7 in favor of the Base Invaders, the girls from Taylor County were looking to seal the deal and would do just that with three more runs from White, Smith and Hadlee Price.
Gilmer failed to get runners home in the fourth, giving the match to the Base Invaders with a final of 13-7.
For the second game on the day, the Base Invaders met up with a different Gilmer team and would dominate the diamond.
With Jones toeing the rubber and striking out two in the opening inning. Gilmer’s Vanzyl would connect at the plate but was tagged out at first by Kaizley Carr.
The Base Invaders took advantage of their “At Bat” opportunities with White, Wiles and Carr each scoring a run. Jones also added to the first inning score of four, with an in-the-park homer.
During the second, at the arm of Jones, all three Gilmer batters struck out, while the Base Invaders extended their lead to 6-0 with a run by Drainer.
Keeping their momentum, the Base Invaders started the third inning with a double by White. Wiles would go up to bat next and brought White home on a single.
Feeling her confidence on both the mound and at the plate, Jones would go to bat to connect on her second in-the-park homerun of the game. Carr followed Jones and smashed a long range hit for a homer of her own, giving the Taylor County team a nine-point advantage going into the final inning of play.
During the fourth, Mya Johnson would double to bring White and Wiles home for two additional runs.
Continuing to own the bases through the end, Gerkin, Smith and Price also earned runs for the Base Invaders.
Gilmer would finally score their lone run at the bottom on the fourth, as the match up came to a close 14-1 in favor of Dowdy’s Base Invaders.
Back on their home field Wednesday night, the Base Invaders faced rival Bridgeport, and in a scoring frenzy combined with quick defensive play, held the Harrison County team scoreless, to record their third straight win.
Bridgeport would bat first to open the game. Jones once again had an excellent showing from the mound, giving her team a solid start and striking out all three batters during the top of the first.
Brillant with their bats and quick on their feet, Base Invaders White, Wiles, Jones and Sturm would each score a run in the bottom of the second.
Carr added to those runs recording her second homer of the season.
To open the second, Bridgeport’s Worthy would single but would get caught later after stealing second and looking to make her way to third, she was tagged out by Base Invader short stop, White.
Jones would then strike out the next two Bridgeport batters.
After a quiet second inning offensively for the Base Invaders, the team would score another run during the bottom of the third, while Bridgeport continued to struggle to get things going. Jones again struck out two and only allowed one hit. That run, however, was ended with a tag out at first base by Carr.
Carr continued to protect her first base position going into the fourth, as she would tag out Bridgeport’s Horne on a solid hit.
Jones would be a star in the fourth, again sitting two defensively and stealing home on the offensive end, to put the Base Invaders up 7-0.
Finishing strong, White would take Jones’ place on the mound for the final inning, striking out two of the three Bridgeport batters. Worthy recorded a hit for Bridgeport, only to be met with Carr for the tag out at first.
The bottom of the fifth would see Garcia, Olivia Barker, Gerkin, Drainer and Smith cross home plate to secure the 12-0 shut out win.
Congratulations to Dowdy’s Base Invaders on their Stellar 3-1 start to the season!