Tuesday , April 10, 2018 - 8:58 PM
KAYSVILLE — The hits came early, they came often and they came in bunches.
If it sounds familiar, that’s because the Davis softball team has been doing this every game for the past four weeks.
The Darts had won their last six games in a row by a combined score of 66-15. With seven players hitting .300 or better before Tuesday, it wasn’t hard to see why the floodgates are open.
The deluge continued in Tuesday’s 6-1 win over Syracuse (5-6, 3-1 Region 1) that gave Davis (9-3-1, 4-0) sole possession of first place in Region 1. The Darts plated four runs in the first two innings against Titans’ ace pitcher and Southern Utah commit Ashtyn Bauerle, and saw out the rest of the game thanks to the pitching of their own ace, Mia Cullimore.
— Patrick Carr (@patrickcarr_) April 11, 2018
“We’ve been up and down against her, and she’s had our number a number of times, so I think it’s just looking for pitches down in the zone to hit and not swing at her pitch,” Davis head coach Mylei Zachman said.
Both squads shared Region 1’s top spot at 3-0 before first pitch. It only took Davis two pitches to figure out Bauerle in the first inning.
Paige Elkins, who went 2 for 3 with a walk, led off the first with a single, Carley Croshaw walked with two outs and sophomore first baseman Lexi Sunderland ripped an RBI single to center field.
Sunderland went 2 for 4 with one RBI on Tuesday, but perhaps her best moment came when she reacted quickly to a searing line drive hit by Fallyn Marshall along the first-base line and caught the ball a couple feet above her head for the out.
Sidney Eyre’s second-inning single scored Whitney Crowley, who led off with a double. Cullimore came up two batters later and cracked a two-run double off the left-field wall to make it 4-0.
“We have close games every time we play (Syracuse), so coming into it I just really wanted to beat them and stay ahead the whole time,” Cullimore said.
The pitcher’s circle was where Cullimore, committed to Salt Lake Community College, did her best work. She pitched a complete game while allowing one run, four hits and striking out seven batters.
Two of those strikeouts were in critical, bases-loaded situations where Syracuse could’ve further eaten into Davis’s lead. The Titans trailed 5-1 in the fourth inning after Aubri Huffaker’s RBI double was followed by two singles and a hit batter. Cullimore struck out Kiera Petersen to end the danger.
Syracuse manufactured another bases-loaded situation in the sixth with a single by Kylie Derrick and two walks. Cullimore got Abby Sims swinging to send the Titans back to the dugout.
With the bases loaded again in the 6th, Cullimore gets a strikeout to end the inning. 6-1 Davis heading to B6 pic.twitter.com/wKtsWSV3aX— Patrick Carr (@patrickcarr_) April 10, 2018
“That’s a freakin’ good team, but we battled, we competed,” Syracuse head coach Kelly Anderson said. “What did we leave, eight runners on base? At least we gave ourselves a shot.”
In the sixth, Cullimore hit a towering fly ball she thought was going to be a three-run homer — until Syracuse centerfielder Kemri Curtis went back to the wall and timed her jump perfectly to rob Cullimore.
“Two of my home runs have been straight up in the air and I didn’t think they were going out, then they did, so that one I’m like ‘Hopefully it goes out,’ and then it didn’t,” Cullimore said.
Web gem by Kemri Curtis to deny Cullimore a 3 run shot. pic.twitter.com/g3WHyJmCRa— Patrick Carr (@patrickcarr_) April 10, 2018
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