DADE CITY — Emily Pennington pitched a two-hitter Tuesday, helping host Pasco extend its season-opening unbeaten streak to four games with a 4-1 win over Gulf.
The junior right-hander also went 2-for-3 with an RBI, driving in the last run after Jordan Lane opened the bottom of the sixth inning with a triple.
“This was a really big game for us,” Pennington said. “This was our first true test. My changeup and my curveball were my best pitches.”
“She was on tonight,” Pirates coach Lisa Herndon said.
Pennington (2-0) did not allow a hit until Gulf’s Amber Maxey connected for a one-out triple in the fourth. Pennington gave up her second hit and only run in the sixth when Maxey drew a two-out walk and Tarra Rice followed with a run-scoring double.
Lane also had two hits and scored twice. She led off the second with a single, stole second, went to third on a passed ball and raced home on a throwing error. Lane also had the triple in the sixth.
“Jordan’s taking charge,” Herndon said. “Jordan’s taking a leadership role.”
Kelli Parker and Amber Caudill each had two hits to contribute to Pasco’s offense. Parker tripled in the third and scored on Lizzy Burchfield’s sacrifice fly. An inning later, Caudill doubled to drive in pinch-runner Ashley Swift, who replaced Pennington on the basepaths.
Gulf (4-3) hit the ball hard on several occasions but was stymied by the Pirates’ solid fielding, including a nice diving stop on a ground ball by second baseman Kaylee Britton.
Gulf pitcher Madison Morlan collapsed to the ground after taking a hard line drive to the groin area off Caudill’s bat in the sixth. Morlan, however, remained in the game and after a few warmup tosses struck out Hannah Johnson to get out of a jam.