ORANGE PARK – Ridgeview High combined pitcher Brittany Michael silencing the Oakleaf High batting lineup with seven strikeouts as the Lady Panthers took advantage of a handful of Knights’ field …
ORANGE PARK – Ridgeview High combined pitcher Brittany Michael silencing the Oakleaf High batting lineup with seven strikeouts as the Lady Panthers took advantage of a handful of Knights’ field miscues to win 2-0 Monday night in a clash of siblings; Ridgeview coach Casey Thompson versus Oakleaf coach Christina Thompson, brother and sister.
“We talked briefly about this game at Easter dinner,” said Casey Thompson, 16-7, avenges an 8-0 Oakleaf win on March 12. Thompson, in his first year for the Panthers, now has wins over Fleming Island, Clay (twice), St. Johns Country Day School and Oakleaf. Orange Park defeated the Panthers 2-1 with Middleburg winning a 5-1 game in March. Ridgeview was set to play at Keystone Heights on April 23.
Small ball Ridgeview slayed the softball Knights of Oakleaf 2-0 with two deep grounders in the six hole from Sarah Anderson and Brooke Michael spelling disaster with a deflected glove stab on an Ashlyn Halford slice back to Oakleaf pitcher Cambria Arturo scoring Anderson in the third inning. Oakleaf shortstop Kaylee Lambrecht retrieved both deep hits by Anderson and Michael; one a spectacular diving snag, but deferred her throws.
Ridgeview had bases loaded twice but could not convert to runs with the Panthers adding the second run in the fifth off singles again to Anderson and Michael with Alyssa Adams punching a sacrifice fly to right field to get Anderson to home plate.
Brittany Michael kept Oakleaf’s big bats quiet with seven strikeouts and just four hits. Arturo had just two strikeouts with three walks for Oakleaf.
Oakleaf got Katie Kistler to third in the first inning off a triple, but could not bring her past home plate with Michael striking out powerhitters Jaeda McFarland and Baylee Goddard.
In the third, Kistler again got on base with a single, but was tossed out at second base on a steal attempt for a third out after two flyouts.
Oakleaf had runners at first and second in the fourth; Goddard on a walk and Jacie Brookshire off a sun-screened flyball misplayed by centerfielder Ashlyn Halford, but Michael again got a strikeout and flyout to end the inning.