RONDA — The first round of the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference softball tournament kicked off on Monday night as East Wilkes hosted North Wilkes. The Lady Cardinals came out swinging early and held on to take an 11-9 win over the Vikings to move on to the second round of the tournament.
East Wilkes was able to put runners on base early, as Alexis Lester singled on a hard ground ball to center field. Lauren Rakes was able to follow up Lester’s hit with a single to center field. With runners on the corners, Jenna Bullard stepped up to the plate for East Wilkes. On the first pitch she saw, Bullard sent the ball sailing over the left field fence for a three-run home run. It was Bullard’s first home run of the season, and it gave the Lady Cardinals extra momentum heading into the second inning.
The Lady Cardinals kept their bats going in the second inning, as they added four runs to their total. Krysta Prevette put down a clean bunt for a single, while Lester singled to right field. Rakes stepped up for the Cardinals and put down a hard hit double to right field which brought Prevette across the plate. With one out on the board, Megan Losito was able to hit a double to center field to score Lester and Rakes. The final run of the inning came as Losito stole home on a wild pitch. At the end of the second inning, East Wilkes had a strong 7-0 lead over North Wilkes.
East Wilkes added two more runs in the third inning to make the score 9-0 heading into the fourth. North Wilkes was able to put down a few hits in the top of the fourth inning, as the Viking scored two runs to make the score 9-2.
The Cardinals scored its final two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning, as Bullard hit a triple to score Prevette and Rakes. With the score 11-2, North Wilkes put down an impressive sixth inning scoring seven runs. The Vikings put down hit after hit to make the score 11-9 heading into the home stretch.
The Cardinals were able to get out of the jam as they put down the final out in the sixth inning, then put down three outs in a row in the seventh inning. East Wilkes was able to hang on to its lead to take an 11-2 win over North Wilkes.
East Wilkes moved on to the second round of the MVAC softball tournament where the Cardinals faced West Wilkes. Results were not available by press deadline.