JEFFERSON CITY — The Rock Bridge softball team used smart base-running and emerging young players to defeat Camdenton 7-2 on Wednesday night on Duensing Field in Jefferson City and advance to the second round of the Class 4, District 10 tournament.
The opportunistic Bruins offense took full advantage of Camdenton miscues.Five of their seven runs came on errors or errant pitches.
Rock Bridge freshmen Kali Hall, Sammi Bell and Kelsey Neitzel were especially impressive.
"I put them in to run. They make a mistake, and we’ve got a problem. And all three scored. Very commendable effort," said coach Rock Bridge coach Joe Henderson
Another important facet of the Bruins attack was the bunting of sophomores Nicole Jamison and Danielle Linneman. Jamison's bunt came with her batting lefty, though she is normally right-handed.
"I asked her to do that tonight and she came through. She’s a sophomore, and for a kid to take that on and come through in a tight situation…" Henderson said.
Rock Bridge's offense was also made more impressive by the cold, damp night.
"It was tough conditions… Cold, wet, tough lights. They fought through it all and hit the ball," Henderson said.
The Bruins also got competent play from their pitchers, Lauren Fuller and Amber Beeler, who only surrendered two runs.
"Overall, I thought it was good. I thought they hit their spots well," Bruins pitching coach Katie McMahon said.
The night, though, belonged to Rock Bridge's lesser known players, with the freshmen on the base paths and the sophomores bunting
"Tonight it was about the fringe players. It wasn’t about the stars. It was about the fringe players," Henderson said.
Rock Bridge advances to play rival Hickman at 6:15 tonight on Duensing Field in Jefferson City. The Kewpies defeated Waynesville 9-0 in the early game Wednesday.
Hickman won with a well-balanced game, breaking the contest open with four runs in the sixth inning.
"It was a team effort tonight," Kewpies coach Courtney Haskell said.