Brownstown Central softball coach Monte Ault immediately knew what led to Monday’s loss against visiting Floyd Central following the final out: errors.
The Braves committed eight errors while giving up four earned runs in a 7-2 loss to the Hilltoppers.
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“Errors and lack of hitting with runners in scoring position,” Ault said. “The first inning we had bases loaded and no outs and we couldn’t get the key hits. We’re slumping a little bit in the middle of our lineup. We had eight errors, and it wasn’t just one girl. We had dropped balls, baserunning errors, and that was the difference in the game.”
Following a scoreless first inning, the Hilltoppers opened a 1-0 lead off an RBI single.
The Hilltoppers continued to roll in the third adding another two runs behind a home run over the right field fence. The inning ended on a superb double play at third base when the Braves’ Brooke Ebbing tagged a pair of runners out after a throw from home by Maeleigh Tidd.
Tidd opened and singled to left field for an RBI to score Beth Wayman and narrow the deficit to 3-1.
Down 5-1, in the bottom of the fifth, Ebbing scored a run off an RBI single by Tidd after advancing to third.
The Braves couldn’t muster another run the rest of the way as they moved to 14-4 on the season.
At the plate, the Hilltoppers tallied nine hits to the Braves’ six.
“They had good speed and made some nice catches out there on defense,” Ault said. “They had four earned runs out of seven. They made some nice plays. Everything wasn’t negative: Beth Wayman and Brooke Ebbing had some nice plays in the field, and the pitching was pretty good.”
Braves senior Kourtney Branaman picked up the loss in the circle, throwing three strikeouts and three walks.
While the top of the lineup was able to get hits, the bottom struggled for the Braves.
“All our hits were from the one through four positions; we didn’t get a hit the rest of the way down,” Ault said. “That’s unusual. We hit the ball hard but they made nice plays.”
As the season winds down, the Braves look to build themselves back up following the loss.
“We want to be playing these kinds of team to get ready for sectional,” Ault said. “The girls got to stay up and be positive. The biggest thing is to be relaxed and ready to play Charlestown on Thursday, who’ve won the Mid-Southern Conference the past couple years. I’m confident in these girls. If we play the way we can, we can beat anyone in our sectional.”