ST. PETERSBURG — Relynn Capra took a majestic swing, the bat rifling through the strike zone as she deposited the ball over the leftfield wall for a two-run homer.
That sixth-inning hit gave Northeast some breathing room in a 6-2 victory over Seminole in a key Class 7A, District 9 game.
It also signaled a turnaround for the Viking offense, which entered with just one home run and only one player batting above .300. The Vikings more than made up for that with eight hits, including six for extra bases. Capra, who has the team’s two home runs this season, capped it off with her blast.
“The pitch was high just where I like it,” Capra said. “I was able to get a swing. Everyone else did well on offense, too. It’s what we like to see.”
Janae Duty had a double and triple, Lizzy Bench had two doubles, and then there was Capra, who finished 2-for-3 with a double and triple.
Despite all the big hits, the Vikings (12-5) had trouble making them count. Northeast left seven runners stranded through the first five innings and were clinging to a 2-1 lead. That didn’t bode well considering the Vikings have lost three one-run games this season, two that were decided in extra innings. The other came on a walkoff homer.
Northeast avoided another similar heartbreak by exploding for four runs in the sixth.
“We’re still a young team, but we’re getting there,” Vikings coach Reggie Randolph said. “We’re learning how to pull out some of these tight games.”
The runs provided cushion for Northeast starter Riley Randolph, who allowed seven hits and recorded nine strikeouts. But there were some anxious moments in the seventh when Seminole (12-9) scored once. With two runners on, Randolph ended the threat by getting Brooke McEntire to fly out.
McEntire was 2-for-3 before that and had the team’s only extra-base hit, a double.
“My defense came through with a lot of big plays,” Randolph said. “The offense was real strong, too. That was probably our best performance on offense this season.”
On Monday, the Vikings can clinch the south division in the Pinellas County Athletic Conference with a win over Lakewood.