TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY
By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
SOUTH LAUREL — Tuesday’s win over Lincoln County was a bit symbolic in regards to the 500-win milestone the Lady Cardinals were chasing coming into the game.
It may have taken a while to get there, but they finally made it thanks to a six-run rally that helped seal the 8-1 win.
The Lady Cardinals become the sixth program in the state to get to the 500-win mark and the second in Laurel County as North Laurel achieved the feat under former head coach Shane Weaver.
After the win, Burns talked about how special it was to be able to get that 500th win as the Lady Cardinals’ coach.
“I’m excited for the program,” Burns said. “Kaye and Larry Smith started this thing and got most of the wins and I just happened to be there when we got to 500.
“A lot of good players have gone through this program and coaches as well,” he added. “I’m relieved to get it past us and we’ve just got to keep working at getting better.”
After being held to two runs through the first five innings, South Laurel broke things open in the sixth inning when it got a pair of two-run home runs from Chelsey Wemes and Amber Hyde. When the inning was over, James Burns’ team batted around in the order and racked up seven hits in the inning to grab the 8-1 lead.
On the mound, it was all Hagan Burns as she went the distance, allowing one run on two hits and striking out nine Lincoln County batters.
Burns said he was proud of his team for fighting through what was a nip-and-tuck game until the late innings.
“This was a big win for us tonight,” Burns said. “Hagan pitched good and she had her pitches working really well. We hit the ball well and came up with two big home runs.
“I think we played spot-on defense,” he added. “We didn’t have an errors all night and we hit the ball well early, they were just making good plays.”
A leadoff walk by Burns in the second inning led to the Lady Patriots’ early 1-0 lead after Chelsea Marcum came in to score on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Jaylan Sowders.
The Lady Cardinals tied things up in the bottom of the second after three straight singles to start the inning allowed pinch-runner Mackenzie Powenski to score and make the score 1-1.
All was quiet until Cassandra Johnson led off the bottom of the fifth inning with a triple and scored on a wild pitch to give her team a 2-1 lead.
The Lady Cardinals broke the game open with the six-run sixth inning to seal the win. Burns struck out the final two batters of the game to close things out. South Laurel will return to action Thursday to face Corbin in a 50th District matchup.