BROOKLET — Southeast Bulloch suffered a setback Wednesday afternoon, falling to Richmond Hill by a count of 8-1 in a non-region matchup.
The Lady Wildcats (7-5) scored once in the first to take an early lead, then rallied for three runs each in the third and fifth innings to run away with the win.
Richmond Hill didn’t have any huge plays to decide the contest, but 10 hits scattered off of SEB starter Madison Fields and reliever Blair Chapman managed to keep runners circling the bases and crossing the plate.
“We just didn’t have it today,” SEB coach Aimee Civalier said. “Give Richmond Hill a lot of credit for playing well, but we need to do better. We’ve had some games against competition that isn’t the best, so our girls need to understand what kind of effort it takes to beat good opponents.”
Corbin Natale led off the game with a single and scored on a two-out single by Liz Wallace.
Armed with the early lead, Wildcat starter Morgan Hunter took control, facing just one batter over the minimum through the first two innings.
Richmond Hill extended its lead in the third.
Katie Petty led off the frame with a double and advanced to third on a Natale bunt single before Caroline Williams drove in both with a double. Williams came across on a sacrifice by Izzy Marsh to make it a 4-0 game.
SEB (9-4, 5-0 Region 1-AAA) had a chance to get back into the game in its half of the third inning, but came up a bit short.
Faith Judy led off the inning with a single in front of a Storm Williams groundout. Lauren Hardin reached on an error and Chapman was hit by a pitch to load the bases with one out.
Hunter got Morgan Joyner to pop to shallow center for the second out. Mary Grace Manahan got the Jackets on the board with a single to left, but Hardin was cut down at the plate trying to score a second run on a strong throw by March.
“It was just a great play by (Marsh),” Civalier said. “Maybe I wouldn’t send (Hardin) if I had to do it again, but at that point we were just trying to make something happen.”
With Chapman on in relief in the fifth inning, the Wildcats put the game out of reach.
Natale singled to begin the trouble and doubles by Williams, Marsh and Sam Mault extended the Richmond Hill advantage to 7-1.
Mault then slammed the door on SEB as she took over for Hunter and recorded the final six outs, including three strikeouts.
The Jackets will jump back into sub-region action today as they host Islands at 5:30 p.m.
“We need to get it going against Islands,” Civalier said. “They are our competition in our sub-region. We need to show up ready to play.”
Mike Anthony may be reached at (912) 489-9408.