(David Jenkins, Staff)
As soon as Baer turned and connected on a fast ball from Sikeston starter Sarah Hopson, the Lady Pirates had Sikeston's, and Hopson's, number.
"Sarah tries not to show her emotion on the field," Sikeston head coach Tiffany Morgan said about Hopson's reaction to the solo shot. "Sarah's a big key to the team and when she gets down, it's a letdown for the team. Home runs are going to happen. Especially from hitters like that. My scouting report from yesterday said she was a beast. That was all the words that I needed about (Baer)."
Perryville rode the momentum Baer gave them to an eventual 8-1 lead and looked to breeze out of Sikeston with their second win of the season.
The Sikeston Lady Bulldogs, however, made it a bit more interesting
A valiant comeback effort by the Lady Bulldogs fell just short as the Perryville Lady Pirates held on to win 8-7 at the Sikeston Sports Complex on Tuesday afternoon.
"I told the girls that it could have easily been a 8-1 game," Morgan said. "When you come back like that, they have to keep their heads up."
Trailing by seven runs entering the bottom of the sixth inning, the Lady Bulldogs pumped out six runs to close the deficit to one. Perryville starter Casey Hotop began to lose control after five dynamite innings which only aided the Lady Bulldog rally.
A single by Elizabeth Bolen with two outs began Sikeston's rally. Courtney Evans reached on an error followed by an RBI single to right field by Annie Ramey. Three consecutive walks to Sarah Hopson, Courtney Collins and Sydney Davied made the score 8-4. Sarah Dixon proceeded with the biggest hit of the inning clearing the bases with a single to center field. Dixon eventually moved over to second on a throw and was tagged out between second and third to end the inning.
Nicki James delivered with a single in the bottom of the seventh inning, but nothing came of it as Perryville held strong for the win.
"They had the never quit in them," Perryville head coach Jeff Steffens said. "Which is good to see in any team. You just wish you weren't on the defensive side when they had that never quite attitude.
"We had our pitcher get in a bit of a rough spot but, she made it through it."
Sikeston's comeback efforts were fueled by a pitching change in favor of Davied in the fourth inning. Davied slowed Perryville's offense to a creep with her wicked change up that had the Lady Pirates off balance for the last three innings.
"Sydney came in and pretty much shut them down," said Morgan. "That's what I'm looking for her to do. She can show the other team a different type of pitching and that's what she did. Once she got used to throwing it, that change of speed really made a difference."
Davied allowed two runs on two hits in the fifth inning but was untouched in the last two innings. A key double play from Collins at second base helped that effort in the top of the seventh. Hopson was tagged with six runs.
Perryville (2-0) connected for nine combined hits from eight different players. Ashley Hotop had a single and a 2-RBI double to lead her squad.
Elizabeth Bolen led Sikeston with two singles as the Lady Bulldogs finished with six hits.
Sikeston (1-1) will be back in action on Thursday when they host East Carter County.
Perryville 103 220 0 -- 8
Sikeston 001 006 0 -- 7
WP -- Casey Hotop. LP -- Sarah Hopson. Multiple hitters -- (P) Ashley Hotop 2-4. (S) Elizabeth Bolen 2-4. 2B -- (P) A. Hotop. (S) Hopson. HR -- (P) Morgan Baer.