by Alan Hoskins
Kansas City Kansas Community College rapped out 48 hits in four games over the weekend but still had to settle for splits in doubleheaders with Jayhawk Conference rivals Pratt and Dodge City.
The Lady Blue Devils won the opener in both doubleheaders, defeating Pratt 6-1 and Dodge City 5-3 before losing to Pratt 5-4 and Dodge City 6-2.
The splits left the Blue Devils 8-6 in conference play and 12-6 overall heading into a doubleheader at first place Highland (15-1) Tuesday.
KCKCC then returns home to play host to Maple Woods Friday at 2 and 4 p.m. and a University of Kansas club team Saturday at 1-3 p.m.
Freshman centerfielder Justice Scales led the offense, collecting two hits in each game and driving in four runs while third baseman Lacey Santiago and leftfielder Mierra Morisette each had seven hits.
Leslie Ford, the winning pitcher in both games, helped her own cause with six hits while Amanda Holroyd and Hanna Barnhart each had five.
Ford allowed just four hits, struck out eight and no earned runs in the 6-1 win over Pratt.
Trailing 1-0 in the second, KCKCC scored twice on back-to-back doubles by Morisette and Ashley Henington and an RBI single by Ford and then made it 4-1 in the fourth on a run-scoring double by Laura Vanderheiden and an RBI triple by Scales following Megan Dike’s leadoff single.
The final two runs scored in the sixth following leadoff singles by Ford and Vanderheiden.
Pratt broke a 4-4 deadlock in the top of the seventh of the nightcap, scoring on three singles against Ford, who allowed just four hits and the one run while fanning five in 3.2 innings of relief.
KCKCC took a 3-1 lead, scoring twice in the first on singles by Santiago, Scales and Barnhart and once in the second on Santiago’s two-out hit.
Pratt went ahead 4-3 in the fourth but KCKCC tied it on another Santiago hit following a leadoff single by Ford.
The Blue Devils backed Ford’s 7-hit pitching with 16 hits in the 5-3 win over Dodge City as Santiago and Morisette each had three and Scales, Ford and Megan Dike two each.
KCKCC took a 2-0 lead in the first on singles by Santiago and Morisette, Holroyd’s sacrifice fly and Barnhart’s double and added two more in the second on Scales’ two-out single following hits by Ford and Dike.
A two-run home run in the sixth inning by Amanda Holroyd was the lone highlight in the 6-2 loss to Dodge City. Elizabeth Seimears took the loss, giving up 12 hits.
“Elizabeth pitched well enough to win but our defense gave them a couple of runs,” said KCKCC coach Kacy Tillery. “But we continue to swing the bats with Santiago and Scales at the top of the order and Morisette, Holroyd and Barnhart in the middle.”