By PAUL HINES
---- — MT. VERNON – A trio of Lady Rams hitters helped the softball team smash Althoff 9-2 Tuesday.
“They were just excited from the get go,” Mt. Vernon coach Lance Boldt said. “You could see it in the pre-game. So I'm happy for them.”Paige Clinton, Summer Karch and Hannah Wright combined for six hits and five RBI in the game.“Those top three or four hitters, they've all got some power and they can drive the ball,” Boldt said.Left fielder Rachel Kirsch made the defensive play of the game that helped the Lady Rams hold a 3-1 lead midway through the game. With a runner on third, Kirsch raced down a fly ball and made a diving catch to save a run.“The wind was blowing out a little bit, and it carried just enough for her to dive and make that play,” Boldt said. “They had the momentum at that time, and we needed somebody to stop the bleeding. And she was able to do that.”Wright launched a two-run homer over the left field fence in the opening inning to give the Lady Rams a 2-0 edge. Althoff never recovered.Kelby Kujawa continued the scoring with an RBI single. The Lady Rams struck again in the fourth.Makiah Rush scored on an error. Karch lofted a fly ball to left that allowed Rachel Wright to tag up and score for a 5-1 edge.Hannah Wright helped the Lady Rams continue to tack on runs with a smash that hopped the fence for a ground-rule double. The extra base hit plated another run. Mt. Vernon tacked on another score after an Althoff error.Karch started the game in the circle for Mt. Vernon and pitched four innings for the victory. She finished with three strikeouts and didn't allow an Althoff hit until the fourth inning.Hannah Wright finished the game in relief and fanned four batters.Mt. Vernon is 4-4 this season. The game was the Lady Rams first South Seven Conference win of the season and first home game of the season.