The game proved to be a pitchers’ duel between Harrison’s Bridgette Rainey and Pierce Fox, and Pope’s Elly Strother.
Rainey gave up only one hit in four innings, but she allowed three runs — two earned — walked three, struck out two, hit a batter and tossed three wild pitches. Fox, entered in the fifth, surrendering one hit and striking out four in two innings.
Meanwhile, Strother threw a complete game, giving up two earned runs on one hit. She did, however, allow six walks and three wild pitches while striking out four.
Pope’s defense played a major role in picking up the victory as the Lady Greyhounds turned double plays in the fifth and sixth innings to stymie Harrison’s comeback.
Pope won without coach Chris Turco, who was away from the team for good reason.
“It was a great win and a bunch of weight off my back to give Turco a victory,” assistant coach Al Savransky said. “Hopefully, everything will go great. He’s having his baby, and we played great.
“We played great defense, and we took advantage of the situations. We told the girls that we’re going to have to play great defense this year, and they’re hitting some of their goals by doing that. We ran well on the bases, and took advantage of the situations and we scored.”
Pope later completed a spotless day by beating Walton 13-2 in five innings.
On the Lady Greyhounds’ way toward beating Harrison, Sydney Segers was hit by a pitch to lead off the second. She moved to second on Quentin Staton’s single, and both players advanced on Shawna Finister’s sacrifice bunt.
Segers then scored, and Staton moved to third, on a wild pitch. After Samantha Crabtree walked, she advanced on a passed ball that scored Staton.
Lauren Palace’s groundout to the pitcher advanced Crabtree, who later scored on another wild pitch that gave Pope its 3-0 margin.
Harrison cut into the lead in the third when Morgan Sutter drew a leadoff walk, reached second on Brooke Taylor’s sacrifice bunt and came around to score on Mikenzie Vaughn’s two-out RBI double.
The Lady Hoyas added to their total in the fourth. Lindsey Walsh pinch-ran for Abby Broome, who led off with a walk. Walsh stole second, got to third on Emily Stallings’ groundout and scored when Rachel Farris reached on an error.
Harrison threatened again in the fifth after Strother issued back-to-back walks to Taylor and Kellie Carroll. Vaughn grounded out for the first out of the frame, and a wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third. The rally was cut short, however, when Finister doubled-up Taylor at home after catching Sierra Maddox’s fly ball, preserving Pope’s one-run lead.
Strother was involved in another double play in the sixth, and she retired the side in the seventh for the victory.
“The girls had some decent at-bats, because we drew some walks, but we only had one hit,” Harrison coach Matt Jones said. “It’s kind of hard to make a comeback when you’re not hitting the ball and trying to manufacture runs every inning. We got some runners in scoring position, but we never got the big hit.”
Pope 13, Walton 2 (5 inn.): Katie Deady batted 3-for-3 with a double and a triple, and totaled three RBIs in leading the Lady Greyhounds to another victory in the Kell Invitational.
Deady also scored three times. Ellie Viland was 2-for-3 with three runs, Megan Metzinger batted 2-for-4 with three RBIs and three runs scored and Ellyn Strother was 1-for-2 with two RBIs.
Lindsey Walsh gave up two earned runs and struck out seven for the Lady Greyhounds (2-0), who continue play in the invitational today.