Seven and 13 both turned out to be lucky numbers for South Elgin. The Storm scored 7 runs in the second inning on the way to defeating Larkin, 13-0, in 6 innings in the teams' Upstate Eight Conference softball opener Tuesday at Larkin.
Paige Allen scattered 5 hits from the circle while she and batterymate Alyssa Buddle had 3 hits apiece. The Storm banged out 16 hits against a pair of Larkin pitchers.
The visiting Storm (5-2) also played errorless defense, with right fielder Brittany Koss making a couple of diving catches.
"The defense is great," said Allen. "They play awesome. I know the outfield is playing really well for me. Brittany in right field made a lot of shoestring catches for me. They were really on their game today."
The offense also came through big-time. After plating a pair of unearned runs in the first, the Storm exploded in the second. They knocked out 6 hits (Allen had 2), stole home twice, and took advantage of 3 Larkin errors and a hit batter.
"I think that helps Paige relax," said Storm coach Jason Schaal about the big early lead. "It helps her relax. She had 6 strikeouts and one walk. She's been pitching great."
After the Storm's big inning, Jaclyn Saurbaugh took over in the circle for Larkin and restored order for a while. She held the visitors scoreless for 3 innings before running out of gas in the sixth, when the Storm scored 4 more times.
"Our pitching is average," said Larkin coach Anne Vogt. "We're going to get hit. We don't have a pitcher who's going to strike out 10 a game. Our pitching is going to keep us in games, but we've got to hit the ball and score runs."
Larkin (0-4) couldn't get anything going with the bats on Tuesday. Each of the Royals' 5 hits came with 2 outs. Larkin had 2 baserunners in an inning just once. Laurel Vollman singled and Rachel Martinez walked with 2 outs in the fifth, but Allen got the third out.
Saurbaugh had 2 hits for the Royals.
Mallory Mecklenburg, Cassidy Westlund, and Sam Helton each had 2 hits for South Elgin. Kara Rodriguez scored twice and drove in a run.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.