Bandys and Wilkes Central shared two things on Wednesday — team colors and a softball field.
The Lady Trojans, however, owned the lead.
Scarlett Harris hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the first inning, and the Lady Trojans (20-5) scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth, to advance to the second round playoffs.
Harris’ two-run shot came from the third position in the line-up, which is a significant difference from her typical fifth spot in the batting order.
“When I was hitting fifth, I was leading off a lot,” Harris said. “I didn’t get as many at-bats. Being in the three hole, I knew I had to prepare myself, get people moved around on the bases and do my job.”
While Bandys got off to a great start, they struggled to get runners to score. Five runners were left in scoring position at second base during the game.
“We’ve struggled all year with situational hitting,” said Bandys’ coach Mike Carpenter. “Early in the year, we did a very good job of hitting the right pitch to the right place. The last two or three weeks, we haven’t done a very good job. We’ve concentrated in practice on doing that. We’ve been working on some things that will hopefully help us in the playoffs to produce more runs.”
As the Lady Trojans struggled to drive in runs, the Eagles (9-10) struggled to hit the ball. They had three hits and one walk in the game off of pitcher Taylor Sigmon.
The Eagles’ strongest inning came in the top of the second, when they loaded the bases. However, Bandys’ pitcher Taylor Sigmon struck out two batters in a row to get out of the inning unscathed.
Bandys added to its lead in the bottom of the sixth inning, as a bloop single from Kelsey Clark plated Kayln Chapman.
Two errors on Wilkes Central allowed Brittni Pemleton and Clark to score in the inning, as the Lady Trojans extended their lead for good.
Next up for Bandys is a match up with Owen on the road.
The Lady Warhorses (24-2) defeated fellow-CVAC member Bunker Hill on Wednesday.
“We don’t know about Owen,” coach Carpenter said. “We don’t have any information on them. We will have to come to practice Thursday with the attitude to work on our weaknesses. The things we did wrong today, we have to correct. Until we get a scouting report, we have to prepare ourselves.”