Tigers assemble 35 hits to rout Canal Winchester, Dublin Jerome

Circleville opened the season with a nine-run first inning on Saturday and didn’t look back as it rolled past Dublin Jerome 17-3 in five innings and recorded a 21-8 win over Canal Winchester, also in five innings, at Groveport.

The Tigers pounded out 35 hits in the doubleheader sweep that pleased long-time coach Dave Truex.

“We’ve been talking about our approach at the plate a lot and about being disciplined and focused on looking for and getting our pitch to hit and not settling on what pitch that the pitcher wants us to hit,” he said. “I felt like our girls did a pretty good job of doing that and they saw what that type of discipline and focus produced.”

Cara Cooper went a perfect 4-for-4 with a double, triple and two RBI; Chandler Hayes was 3-for-5 with a trio of triples and three RBI; Claire Davis smacked a two-run homer in her varsity debut as a freshman and also doubled and drove in four runs; Katie Folkes went 3-for-3 with a triple; Gracie Riddick and Alyssa Liston each went 2-for-3 and Ella Michael helped get the offensive showcase underway with a two-run homer in the first as part of a two-hit day.

Circleville scored 10 runs in the third against former Mid-State League Buckeye Division rival Canal Winchester to take an 11-1 lead.

Hayes led the way against the Indians by going 3-for-3 with a double and two RBI; Cooper was 3-for-4 with a three-run homer in the third and five RBI; Gabby McConnell turned in a perfect 2-for-2 day with two RBI, and Riddick and Allie Jones each went 2-for-3 and drove in a pair of runs.

With gusts reaching 60 MPH on a very windy Saturday, Truex was pleased with the way the Tigers played defensively.

“We had five errors in the two games, but this was the type of a day where defense can get really interesting with the tricks a wind like that can play with the softball,” he said. “We made a couple of mental mistakes, like looking a runner back when we were throwing to first with a 16-2 lead that we will work on, but overall I felt we played fairly well for our first games of the season.”

McConnell earned the pair of wins for the Tigers (2-0), who continue non-league play on Monday at Berne Union.

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