Parkersburg High bats sizzle in 16-5 win against Ripley

Parkersburg High’s Maggie Sauers stands in during her final at-bat during the Big Reds’ 16-5 mercy-rule victory over Ripley Friday at Worthington Ballfields. Sauers went 3 for 4 with five RBIs. Photo by Joe Albright

PARKERSBURG — One night after George Washington’s Brianna McCown hurled a one-hitter against his team, PHS head coach Jason Roberts’ lineup exploded for a 16-5 mercy-rule victory over Ripley in 4 2/3 innings.

The Big Reds overcame a shaky start on the bases and in the field on the way to a 14-hit performance.

Maggie Sauers smacked the cover off the ball with a 3 for 4 day along with five RBIs. She missed out on a two home-run day by a couple of feet. MaKenzie Riddle and Maddi Leggett also drove in multiple runs as PHS improved to 2-1. Riddle picked up the victory on the mound.

“We noticed they were running a left shift and they were throwing inside pitches, I felt like when I went up to the plate she was throwing them right down the middle,” said Sauers on the win and her performance. “They weren’t throwing them real hard and I feel they were having an off game and we really stepped up today.”

Lexi Summers, Maggie Richards and Riddle joined their teammate with multiple hits.

“It was a good comeback win and we have the type of hitting team when they get hot they are going to hit the ball hard,” said Roberts.

“We hope the mistakes will go away with time. We are still learning and have to push some girls a little harder. Some of them lose focus and they need to stay focused.”

Center fielder Richards’ misadventures in the outfield helped the Vikings get on the board first. She not only misplayed Sarah Bannon’s fly ball, but then watched as the ball rolled to the back of the fence. Jaelyn Hunt and Cassidy Young, both of whom reached base on one-out singles, scored on the play. Riddle then struck out Grace Walsh and got Kyra Winter to popout to third baseman Roberts to end the inning.

Brannon led the Vikings with two runs batted in during a 1 for 3 outing. Aaloyah Baldwin went 3 for 3 as the Vikings dropped their opener.

Sauers drove in her first two runs in the bottom of the inning. After Leggett walked, Janna Yost struck out and Summers reached via an error, the Big Reds’ five-hole hitter then sent a ball over the stretched glove hand of first baseman Jahlea Bumpus.

Riddle’s double past a diving Tori Hinzman at second base threated additional damage but Ripley’s Chloe Shinn got Roberts to line out to first base to end the inning tied 2-2.

Sydney Bohn and Sauers started more fun in the bottom of the second. Richards scored the first of her three runs on Bohn’s double up the middle. Yost and Summers then upped the Big Reds’ advantage to 5-2 on Sauers’ two-out hit through the gap between third base and shortstop. The Vikings intentionally walked the Big Reds’ cleanup hitter Emily Allen to bring up Sauers.

Ken Swisher’s Vikings tallied their final runs in the next half inning. Three doubles, one each by Grace Walsh, Lainey Shouldis and Jaden Conrad, knotted the game at five. Shouldis’ hit chased Riddle from the mound. Roberts came on for the final 2 1/3 innings.

Leggett gave the Big Reds the lead for good as her one-out single brought Richards home from second base the next inning.

Shinn took the loss for Ripley.