By PAUL HINES
---- — MT. VERNON – The Lady Rams softball team scraped past Salem 4-3 Monday.
“We did enough offensively,” Mt. Vernon coach Lance Boldt said. “We played great defense, and our pitching was really good.”
Hannah Wright yielded a pair of early runs to the Lady Wildcats but cruised for most of the middle innings. The Lady Rams hurler finished with five strikeouts and threw a complete game.
“She had been battling the flu,” Boldt said. “(She) hadn’t been at school the last few days, and that was just a real gutsy performance by her. So it starts with her.”
The defense behind Wright was equally solid. Mt. Vernon has been prone to some mistakes in the field this season but committed just one miscue on a throw home Monday.
“One bad throw, but other than that it was our best game of the year defensively,” Boldt said.
Salem struck for a pair of runs in the opening half inning, but Mt. Vernon answered immediately. Page Clinton served as the offensive catalyst when she knocked a leadoff double. Kelby Kujawa followed with a walk. Wright keep the Lady Rams clicking with an RBI single. Lauren Wilson added a run-scoring single to tie the game at two. The Lady Rams added another run in the inning to edge ahead 3-2 after an action-filled first inning.
“After they scored two runs that first inning for us to come right back to get those three runs, that was important,” Boldt said. “It let Salem know that we were going to play today. I was really pleased with that.”
The Lady Rams added another score in the second when Wright rocked an RBI double down the left field line to score Clinton.
The game was the first of seven scheduled this week for the Lady Rams. The softball squad has dealt with numerous rainouts and cancellations this season so far.
“We leave here feeling good,” Boldt said. “It’s a great way to start off the week.
“We wanted to get a win off the bat. So overall it was a good day. Salem’s a good team so I’m happy that we came out here ready to play.”
Mt. Vernon is 5-7 this season and is scheduled to host Cahokia today.