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Monk notices improvement despite 9-0 loss against Salisbury

Chris Bowie
Boonville Daily News

The Pilot Grove Lady Tigers softball team is getting closer to putting it all together.

In a 9-0 loss Monday night on the road against the Salisbury Panthers, head coach George Monk said the team made some large improvements defensively and from the mound that showed for most of the game.

“I have to recognize the efforts of the entire club,”Monk said. “The physical improvements made in the last week are astounding. Marci (Lammers) did a much better job in the circle. Her delivery is improving and it showed in a huge reduction in walks. Also, her placement of her pitches and the way she was able to change speeds shows promise. Behind the plate, Grace Peterson is really working hard and has improved her positioning. She has been working on her footwork, which showed as she threw out a Salisbury runner attempting to steal second. It was a real pleasure seeing a marked improvement in our outfield play, too.”

Monk said the girls played well for the most of the game but let it get away from them in the bottom of the sixth with two errors that led to the Salisbury big inning. He said the team also struggled from the plate, which was the first time this year that the hitters were not getting their best at bats.

Of course it didn’t help that Pilot Grove trailed Salisbury 2-0 after the first inning or that the Panthers plated two more runs in the fourth to extend the lead to 4-0. However the real blow came in the sixth innings as Salisbury exploded for five more runs to put the game out of reach.

Jaden Howard picked up the win in the circle for Salisbury while Marci Lammers took the loss for Pilot Grove, who dropped to 0-4 on the season. Howard pitched the first-six innings and struck out 12 batters while giving up just one walk. Lammers, meanwhile, pitched six innings and allowed nine runs-five earned-on seven hits and six walks while striking out five batters.

Salisbury also out-hit Pilot Grove 7-2, with Howard going 2-for-4 with a single, double and three RBIs. Breanne Haines, Cayden Stapleton and Brooke Bartholmew also doubled in the game.

For Pilot Grove, Grace Phillips and Elaina Wirths each had one single.

In the JV game, Salisbury edge Pilot Grove 9-8.

Monk said the hitting improved for the Lady Tigers in the second game.

“We still had our better hitters really pressing,”Monk said. “Marci Lammers hit a deep home run over the fence that was the best swing our club had all night. We did show a little power as Kaitlyn Maggard and Ava Hoff each tripled. Danae Lammers and Grace Peterson each had a single and a double. We still need to improve defensively, but Iam sure that will come.”

Salisbury scored three runs in the second, five again in the third and one in the fifth while Pilot Grove had one in the second, four in the third and three in the fifth.

Grace Phillips took the loss for Pilot Grove by giving up nine runs on nine hits and four walks while striking out four batters