Chesapeake-AA picked a fine time to show off its batting prowess.
The Cougars got 10 hits and senior pitcher Erin Taylor out-dueled junior right-hander Laura Siler as No.5 Chesapeake ousted host and sixth-ranked C. Milton Wright from the Class 4A East regionals with a 9-2 victory in Bel Air yesterday.
All 10 Cougars hits were singles, but they also took advantage of eight Mustangs errors that led to six runs."We were really aggressive at the plate," said senior shortstop Lindsay Ries, who went 3-for-3 and scored twice. "In practice, we've been working on being selective yet aggressive."
Taylor had three of Chesapeake's hits and drove in two runs, but her biggest contribution came on the mound, where she out-pitched Siler, who had been 17-0 and allowed two earned runs all season."Me and [catcher] Sara [Vogt] knew that we had to keep it inside and outside and always low," said Taylor, who improved to 6-3 by striking out nine and allowing four singles. "I just had to keep my head in the game."
The Cougars opened the scoring in the top of the second inning when Taylor's one-out single down the first-base line drove in Justine Wagner, who had reached first on an error.
Chesapeake added two runs in the next inning. Ries reached first on an error and moved to second on a groundout by Kristen Bishoff.
Heather Spoon smashed a come-backer to Siler, whose throw to first baseman Jess Greenwood sailed over her head and into some vegetation behind the bag. Ries raced home from second, and a single by Wagner drove in Spoon.
Another Mustangs error and another RBI single from Taylor in the top of the fifth gave the Cougars a 5-0 lead, but C. Milton Wright scored twice in the sixth.
Chesapeake (14-5) added five runs in the seventh to clinch a quarterfinal date at home with No.13 Westminster on Monday.
The loss ended a brilliant season for the Mustangs, who had gone undefeated in 17 games during the regular season."I certainly thought that we were a comparable team to Chesapeake," said C. Milton Wright coach Joe Dunch, whose team was playing its first regional game at the Class 4A level. "They face day-in and day-out some excellent competition down there. We don't get to see that kind of competition often."