The Gainesville softball team took advantage of some key errors by visiting Suwannee (Live Oak) to rally past the Bulldogs, 3-1, on Tuesday night.
Kyra Hornsby helped the Hurricanes in the circle and at the plate as GHS (5-4) won its third straight game.
The senior tossed a complete game, allowing no earned runs on just three hits with no walks and eight strikeouts. She also finished 2-for-3 at the plate with a double and a run batted in.
“That was a good win for us,” said Gainesville coach Chris Chronister. “Early on we were struggling at the plate a little bit, not being consistent and putting the ball in play, but later in the game we started having better at-bats.”
With the score tied 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth, Mercer University signee Parris Wiggs led off with a triple over the right fielder’s head.
Hornsby then grounded to shortstop, but the Bulldogs’ Zoie Hatch made a bad throw, scoring Wiggs and sending Hornsby to second.
Courtesy runner Elise Knapf then scored on an RBI single to center field by Kam Sumler for a 3-1 lead with no outs.
Hornsby also gave Gainesville a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first.
With two outs, Wiggs reached on an error, and then Hornsby laced a double down the left field line to score Wiggs.
“Defensively it’s just been tough for us this year,” said first-year Suwannee coach Terry Mixon. “It’s been our M.O. all year. We’ve been losing late in the games just like we did today.”
Suwannee (1-5) has lost its last four games by a combined seven runs.
“We’re in the games,” Mixon said. “We’re competitive, but we have to find a way to win a ball game.”
Hornsby set the tone in the top of the first by getting ahead of the first two batters before Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College signee Karis Smith (2-for-3) lined a double down the right field line.
However, Hornsby struck out clean-up hitter Brooklyn Deas to end the inning. She had at least one strikeout in every inning but the third.
“Kyra did a great job tonight,” Chronister said. “She did exactly what we needed her to do. She needed to throw strikes, and that was probably a career high tonight with eight strikeouts, but she made them put the bat on the ball. We didn’t give away any free passes and that’s all we ask out of Kyra.”
Suwannee plated its only run in the third inning after GHS committed back-to-back errors with no outs.
Lead-off hitter Haley Law reached on a fielder’s choice to score Kamryn Lee to tie the game at 1-1.
However, Aa’laysia Williams, who began the inning with an error, made a catch in right field to take away a hit and then doubled up the runner at first base to prevent the Bulldogs from taking its only lead.
Weather permitting, Suwannee will host Godby (Tallahassee) on Thursday at 6 p.m., while GHS will host unbeaten Union County (Lake Butler) on Friday at 7 p.m. The Tigers (6-0) defeated Santa Fe in Alachua, 4-2, to remain undefeated.