By TREY WILLIAMS
The Daniel Boone softball team’s hot start to the 2019 season didn’t cool off in Myrtle Beach.
The Trailblazers improved to 25-5 on the season while participating in the Cal Ripken Experience last week.
Boone concluded the week with an 11-4 defeat of East Carter (Kentucky), a defending state champion. Nickolette Ferguson got the victory on the mound and shortstop Jaycie Jenkins went 2-for-3 with two runs and three RBIs. Brylee Mesusan was also 2-for-3 and Megan Ackerman was 2-for-4 with two RBIs.
Camryn Sarvis and Dannah Persinger each hit a home run.
Ferguson pitched a shutout in an 11-0 win against Ashland (Kentucky) and Ackerman pitched a five-hitter in 3-2 win against Lawrence County. Jenkins was 2-for-4 with three RBIs against Lawrence County. Mesusan was also 2-for-4.
“Players really enjoyed the Ripken Experience,” Daniel Boone coach Jeremy Jenkins said. “Playing on replica major league parks and all-turf fields was an experience in itself. I thought we really pitched well and played really good defense the entire week. We hit it okay, but we have got to be more consistent.
“Both Nickolette and Megan got two victories each. Brylee Mesusan, Jaycie Jenkins and McKenna Dietz were our leading hitters for the week. Hope the experience and success will pay off for us in conference play.”
Ackerman is 15-1 with a save and has allowed 13 earned runs in 96 1/3 innings. Ferguson is 10-3 with a save and has struck out 96 in 71 1/3 innings.
Ackerman (.434), Jenkins (.433) and Ferguson (.409) are each batting above .400. Ackerman is slugging a team-high .711. Ferguson, McKenna Dietz and Sarvis are tied for the team lead in home runs with three apiece, and Ackerman (27) and Jenkins (19) are first and second in RBIs. Mesusan has a team-high 22 stolen bases.
Daniel Boone’s baseball team nearly completed a coveted home-and-home sweep of Science Hill on Tuesday at TVA Credit Union Ballpark.
Right-hander Hunter Adams was pitching a perfect game until Landon Slemp’s one-out hit in the bottom of the fifth inning, and Adams still led 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth thanks to Cade Elliott’s long RBI double to right-center field. But three late errors essentially doomed the ‘Blazers.
“It’s a tough one to lose because we were so close,” Boone coach Rob Hoover said. “When we’re up two with six outs to go we’ve gotta find ways to finish. … Regardless of whether we won or lost this game, we’ve still got a good team. But at the end of the day, when we’re up two with six outs to go we’ve got to get it done.”
Elliott, a 6-foot-5 junior committed to Tennessee, was 2-for-2 with a walk and two RBIs.
Adams struck out seven, walked none and allowed five hits and two earned runs in six innings.
“He was definitely a very good pitcher, one of the best we’ve faced all year,” said Science Hill’s Jackson Hill.
Gaven Jones, in his first varsity start, pitched a five-hit shutout as Boone (12-9) wrapped up play in the Spivey, King and Spivey Tribe Classic with a 9-0 defeat of University High on Saturday at Thomas Stadium. Adams had two hits and two RBIs.
Two weeks after no-hitting Sullivan South, Ryne Haney took a no-hitter into the fourth before settling for a one-hitter in Friday’s 10-0 win against Happy Valley at Clarence Mabe Field.
David Crockett’s Nolan Miller pitched a two-hitter and Cody Wheeley delivered a grand slam in the Pioneers’ 12-0 five-inning win against Unicoi County Saturday in the Spivey, King and Spivey Tribe Classic at J. Fred Johnson Stadium.
Miller tallied three strikeouts and no walks. Wheeley, who also tripled and drew a walk, went 2-for-2 with three runs and five RBIs. Miller and Kaleb Swanson each went 2-for-3 for the Pioneers.
Riley Hope hit a grand slam as David Crockett’s softball team concluded the week’s play at Disney’s Wide World of Sports on Friday with a 7-6 defeat of Beaver (Pennsylvania). Her third-inning blast gave the Pioneers a 4-3 lead.
The Pioneers (15-7) hit four home runs Friday in a 13-0 win against Beloit Memorial. Two of those came from sophomore Mackenzie Baldwin, who drove in seven runs in the game.
Senior Kara Weems pitched a three-hit shutout. She also went 2-for-4 with a home run, two runs and three RBIs.