The Bearettes scored once in the bottom of the first on a single by Allison Conley that scored Chanler Grady. Bradley (3-6) picked up another unearned run in the second when Mikala Ard trotted home on a bases loaded walk.
“We did not have a sense of urgency about scoring runs. We got two and we were real complacent about what our job was at the plate. We left a lot of runs on the field,” Bearettes head coach Christy McElhaney charged.
The senior Bearettes’ pitcher held the Lady Wildcats at bay, allowing only two hits until the top of the fifth. Polk exploded for six straight hits, including doubles by Lydia Triplett, Lily Cuzzort and Hannah Triplett to score five runs and take a 5-2 lead.
With two outs in the top of the seventh, Lydia Triplett started a second Lady Wildcats’ outburst with her second double. Sydney Sloan, Cuzzort, Hannah Triplett and Jordan Triplett followed up with singles to put Polk (4-4) up 8-2.
“She (Conley) does a good job. She’s a good pitcher. She knows how to pitch. Polk coach Bill Triplett said of the veteran Bearette hurler. “She got some pitches up and we were able to capitalize on it.
“Kaitlyn Williams had a great at bat in the sixth inning. She kept battling and battling and got the inning started. Then we got our big girls to the plate,” he continued. “In the seventh, Lydia (Triplett) had a great at bat. I called time out and told her if she (Conley) left her a pitch up it would be the first pitch and she needed to try and hit it out of the ballpark. She hit it to the track. And you can’t say enough about Hannah Triplett, a freshman that just battled and battled. I’m proud of her, she really kept us in the game.”
McElhaney said the Bearettes must carry a sense of urgency to the plate every inning and not settle for what is on the board.
“They hit well. When they get into a rhythm they are good to go. We saw them twice in earlier scrimmages and when they start hitting they all start hitting,” she said of the two Polk County hitting streaks.
“We have a pitcher who goes out there and throws hard every day and if you don’t have a sense of urgency to score runs when you go to the plate, it’s not going to help us out any. I’ve got several girls I can rotate out and rotate through and bat, but we just didn’t have the right combination tonight.”
The Bearettes jump back into action today at 5 p.m. against Rhea County. The Lady Wildcats take the field next in the Lady Raider tournament Friday and Saturday at Lee University weather permitting.
Polk County 000 005 3 — 8 13 4
Bradley Central 110 000 0 — 2 6 0
WP: Hannah Triplett; LP: Allison Conley. 2B: Lydia Triplett (2, Lily Cuzzort, Hannah Triplett (PC); Conley (BC). Other highlights: Sydney Sloan 3-4, L. Triplett 3-4, Cuzzort 2-4, H. Triplett 2-4 (PC); Conley 2-4, Meghan Ward 2-3 (BC). Records: Polk County 4-4; Bradley Central 3-6.