Randy Robinette and the Logan High School softball team faced a very difficult situation on Tuesday night.
With the Lady Cats’ three pitchers out due to injuries or illness, Robinette had to turn to position players to step into the circle.
Logan held open tryouts this week to fill that void.
The Lady Cats still had to play as county rival Chapmanville Regional made the short 10-mile trip down.
The Lady Tigers took advantage of the situation and beat Logan 8-1 to sweep the season series. Chapmanville (10-14) had won 6-4 at home over Logan last week.
It was a split for the Lady Tigers on Tuesday.
Chapmanville began the day with an 8-1 loss at home to Sissonville in a Cardinal Conference makeup game. The Lady Tigers then traveled down the road to face Logan in a game that didn’t get started until 8 p.m.
Logan dropped to 9-13 with the defeat.
Starting first baseman Antonia Hill, who had never pitched in a varsity game and hadn’t been to the mound since the seventh grade, was Logan’s starter. She was tagged for six runs and six hits with one strikeout, one walk and two hit batters over 3.1 innings of work.
Catcher Chastidy Wiley then relieved Hill in the fourth and did better, allowing just one run and two hits with three walks and one hit batter in the last 3.2 innings of relief.
Senior Talya Berry pitched the complete game win for Chapmanville. She gave up one run and five hits while striking out 11, walking two and hitting two batters in a seven-inning worksheet.
Berry also helped her own cause with a tape measure home run in Chapmanville’s four-run fourth inning.
Lady Tigers’ coach Ronnie Ooten said he knows about Logan’s problems at the pitching position. Chapmanville has had its share of pitching woes this season as well.
“It’s a tough situation for them,” Ooten said. “But sometimes that’s the way that it happens. We’re down to the same situation. Talya didn’t throw very well earlier today against Sissonville and they kicked the stuff out of us. But she came down here and threw a pretty good ballgame. We just haven’t been finishing ballgames this year.”
Logan was without its three pitchers — Shana Hall, Aarron Ward and Hana Sedlock. Hall and Ward have been experiencing arm troubles, while the freshman Sedlock was out due to bronchitis.
Robinette said he admired Hill and Wiley for stepping up and volunteering to pitch.
“Hill hadn’t pitched since the seventh grade,” Coach Robinette said. “She had arm problems and she quit pitching. She went out there and tried to help her teammates any way that she could. She had the most experience. Chastidy hasn’t pitched in a long long time. It’s a tough situation for us. Kudos to those kids because I admire them for getting out there and trying. They did a good job. They battled but Chapmanville hit the ball. Those kids have a lot of heart and they were out there pitching for the team. I appreciate that.”
Robinette said Hall and Ward are questionable for the rest of the season. With the sectional tournament only a week away that’s bad news for the Lady Cats.
“Hall has tendonitis in her forearm,” he said. “Ward has a tendon problem. Their return is very questionable. Sedlock is sick with bronchitis and she’s been out since Monday. It’s a tough situation compounded by other problems that we’ve got.”
Leading 2-0 after three innings, the Lady Tigers broke it open in the fourth by plating four runs off starting pitcher Hill.
Hanna Wooten led off with a walk.
Then it was Berry who ripped a towering home run well beyond the high left field fence, giving Chapmanville a 4-0 lead. The homer went some 50 feet beyond the fence and landed on the adjacent ASA softball diamond near second base. The shot was estimated at 250 feet.
“It almost made it to second base on the other field,” Ooten said of Berry’s home run. “That’s a shot. I’m not sure how far that it was. It was a solidly hit home run I know that.”
Chapmanville, though, wasn’t done in the fourth.
Samarah Hurst and Shian Meeks had back-to-back one-out singles and Hope Kirk was hit by a pitch to load up the bases.
Then it was leadoff left fielder Brandi Broom who ripped a two-run double to left to make it a 6-0 ballgame.
That was it for Hill as Logan brought in Wiley.
The Logan catcher got out of the jam. After walking Caitlin Elkins, she got Lauryn Easterling to fly out to right field and got Wooten to pop out to second to retire the side.
Logan made it 6-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning as Shelby Hale, who moved from second base to catcher after Wiley went to the mound, walked and later scored on Kiana Hill’s RBI double to left.
Chapmanville tacked on two insurance runs in the seventh off Wiley to make it 8-1. Hurst drove one in with a bases loaded ground out to second. The other run was driven in by Meeks with an RBI single to center.
Berry then got Logan out in the seventh to end the game.
Berry was 2-for-4 at the plate with the homer and two RBI. Broom went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBI. Meeks was 3-for-3 with a double and two RBI.
Summer Collins led Logan at the plate as she was 2-for-4 with a pair of singles. Rachelle Toppings and Wiley also had hits. Antonia Hill also had a sacrifice bunt.
The Lady Tigers went on top 2-0 in the top of the third with an RBI double to the right fence fence by Meeks and a high chopping RBI single up the middle by Broom.
* Chapmanville was routed by Sisssonville earlier in the day on Tuesday evening at home, 8-1.
Berry was the starting and losing pitcher. She was relieved by Emma Paris.
Elkins was 2-for-3 to lead the Lady Tiger bats. Easterling, Wooten, Berry and Paris had one hit each.
Chapmanville was scheduled to return to action with Wednesday night’s Herbert Hoover game. CRHS then hosts Poca on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday night’s contest was Senior Night. If the game was rained out the Lady Tigers will be having Senior Night on Thursday against the Dots, Ooten said.
The Lady Tigers then close out the regular season on Monday at Sissonville.
Chapmanville is then set to play Class AA No. 3-ranked Scott on Tuesday night in the first round of the best-of-three sectional tourney at Madison. Game 2 is slated for Wednesday, May 1.
Logan was scheduled to play at county rival Man on Wednesday. If the game is rained out, LHS will meet the Lady Billies on Friday. On Thursday, the Lady Cats host Sherman for their Senior Night game at 5:30 p.m. Logan also has a home doubleheader with Pikeview on Saturday before closing out the regular season at South Charleston on Monday.
The Class AAA sectionals between Logan, St. Albans and Nitro is then set to be played on May 1 and 2.
“We need to get well quick,” Robinette said.