COLUMBIA — It’s the third inning of Rock Bridge’s 13-3 home win Tuesday against Moberly. With the Bruins already holding a comfortable 9-0 lead, runners stand on first and second base.
As Moberly pitcher Audrey Davidson tries to compose herself, lyrics boom out of the park’s loud speakers.
Rock Bridge (12-3)
vs. Hickman (7-5)
WHEN: Thursday, 7 p.m.
WHERE: MU's University Field
“No one man should have all that power…”
As Kanye West’s “Power” echoes into the crowd, Lauren Fuller strolls to the plate. The song, in this case, foreshadowed what was to come.
Fuller launched a home run to right field, all but solidifying a Rock Bridge victory. She followed that effort with a solo home run in the sixth inning, a towering rainbow that made the score 13-3 and ended the game early because of the 10-run rule.
The home runs were the second and third of the season for Fuller, who earned second-team All-State honors in 2010. However, while the first of the two soared well over the right field fence, the second home run showed off the muscle that Fuller has become known for.
Off the bat, it looked like a lazy pop up.
“I was a little angry when I hit it, because I was sure it was going to be a pop up to the right fielder. I don’t know, it just kept going,” Fuller said.
Bruins coach Janel Twehous chuckled to herself, before explaining in simple terms how the poorly hit ball still managed to leave the park.
“She’s just that strong,” Twehous said.
With two hits and four RBIs in the game, Fuller provided more than enough support for Rock Bridge’s starting pitcher ... Fuller. The senior, who has committed to play for the University of North Carolina next spring, also made her mark on the mound, striking out five and allowing only one earned run in six innings of work.
Sophomore shortstop Shelbie Atwell, who hit a three-run home run in the victory, says the Bruins (12-3) are more comfortable with Fuller on the mound.
“We have a lot of confidence in her,” Atwell said. “Lauren is confident on the mound, so it makes it easier for the defense to relax. We know she’ll get us ground balls and pop ups.”
While she certainly makes an impact on the diamond, Fuller also has a positive effect on Atwell as well as the Bruins’ other underclassmen off the field.
“She’s a mentor. She’ll take them under her belt and try to teach and help them. She’s a positive role model for all of the young ones,” Twehous said.
For Atwell specifically, Fuller is a friend as well as a teammate.
“At school she always makes an effort to talk to us. She makes sure to let people know that we’re her teammates,” Atwell said. “I’m really going to miss her when she leaves.”
As for her introduction song, Fuller says that while it might reflect her play, the reason for its selection is far less brash.
“I guess it’s appropriate,” Fuller said. “Honestly, I just like the song though, so that’s what I picked.”