ROCKY POINT — The Lady Eagles of East Bladen High, though fielding a young varsity soccer squad, got plenty of youthful energy and more than enough production on Monday, opening the season with a 4-0 whitewashing of Heidi Trask High in a non-conference matchup.
The 1-0 Lady Eagles got a pair of goals each from freshman Lacey Suggs and sophomore Natalie Hardin.
East Bladen got on the board early with an unassisted goal by Hardin, who navigated her way through the Lady Titans’ porous defense and blasted a shot into the back of the net.
Moments later, Hardin found the same back of the net with another shot, this time off a feed from Suggs for a 2-0 East Bladen lead.
Before the first half could expire, the Lady Eagles tacked on another goal — this time off the foot of Suggs, who took a pass from Hardin and booted a shot into the Heidi Task net.
In the second half, East Bladen put its fourth goal on the board when Hardin’s pass found Suggs racing toward the Lady Titans’ net and Suggs’ shot beat the Trask netminder for a 4-0 Lady Eagles lead.
The East Bladen domination of the match showed far more than the final score indicated in the overall shots taken. The Lady Eagles outshot Heidi Trask by a 24-0 margin.
In the nets for East Bladen, Asha Graham and Abby Ward tag-teamed to earn the shutout.
— In Dublin on Tuesday, visiting South Robeson High stole a 4-2 non-conference win from West Bladen with three runs in the top of the seventh — all brought home on walks.
The loss drops the Knights to 0-2.
The Mustangs scored first with a run in the second inning, but West Bladen answered in the fourth frame with a pair of runs behind a South Robeson error and an RBI single from Liston Britt.
In the seventh, a trio of bases-loaded walks gave the Mustangs the game.
— In Elizabethtown on Tuesday, the Eagles broke open a knotted game with three runs in the fifth frame to earn a 5-2 non-conference win over Clinton.
The victory moved East Bladen to 2-0.
With the Dark Horses leading 2-0 in the fourth, the Eagles plated a pair of runs on a wild pitch and a groundout RBI by C.J. McDowell.
In the fifth, the Eagles filled the bags and Farrell Murchison’s groundout scored one run before a two-run error put East Bladen up by the final score.
— In Dublin on Wednesday, the Knights earned their first win of the season with a 6-3 victory over West Columbus High.
West Bladen went to 1-2 with the win.
Liston Britt held the Vikings to just one hit over the first six innings, though West Columbus managed to score three unearned runs in the top of the sixth to tie the game.
But in the bottom of the inning, West Bladen pushed across three runs behind an RBI double by Matthew Wells, RBI triple by Trevor Lesane and RBI single by C.J. Singletary.
— In Clinton on Wednesday, the Eagles’ game with Union High was called after one inning by the umpires because of the cold weather.
East Bladen was leading at the time, 3-1.
— In Dublin on Tuesday, the Lady Knights stormed to a big lead, then hung on to nip South Robeson High 9-8 in a non-conference game.
The win improves West Bladen to 2-0.
The visitors opened the scoring and took a 2-0 lead that lasted until the fourth frame, when Nicole Wyatt cut the deficit in half with an RBI single.
In the home fifth, the Lady Knights erupted for eight runs behind an RBI single by Erica Tanner, RBI single by Abbey Walters, RBI walk to Robin Coleman, two-run single by Wyatt and an RBI single by Kaitlyn Sykes for a 9-2 lead.
But the Lady Mustangs responded, scoring six times in the top of the sixth to close the gap to a single run before the uprising was quelled.
— In Elizabethtown on Tuesday, the Lady Eagles opened their softball season with a two-game sweep of Clinton High by the narrowest of margins, 4-3 and 7-6.
The wins put East Bladen at 2-0 and also send coach Patty Evers over the 100-win mark for her softball coaching career at 101-71.
In the opener, the lady Dark Horses took a 1-0 lead in the first frame, but East Bladen answered with a run in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI single by Abby Norris.
After Clinton took a 2-1 lead in the second, but the Lady Eagles knotted the game again on a wild pitch in the third inning.
The visitors took a 3-2 lead in the fifth, but East Bladen responded on the legs of Lacey Suggs, who dropped down a perfect bunt and circled the bases when the throw went awry.
In the home half of the sixth, Abby Ward singled and stole second ahead of a bunt single by Suggs. Ward never slowed and scored easily when the throw from first base was late.
In the second game, a walk and error helped East Bladen take a 3-0 lead in the second, but Clinton rallied back to knot the game at 3-3 before the Lady Knights opened a 5-3 edge in the sixth inning behind an RBI single by Suggs.
The Lady Dark Horses didn’t fold, and scored twice in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game at 5-5.
After a scoreless seventh, East Bladen scored when Suggs reached on an infield single, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on Lexie Dawson’s single. After a walk and infield single by Norris loaded the bases, Miller Heustess walked to force home another run.
Clinton scored a run in the bottom of the eighth, but the rally died there.
— In Dublin on Wednesday, West Bladen lit up the scoreboard for 22 runs in just two innings to beat West Columbus High, 22-0.
The win improved the Lady Knights to 3-0.
West Bladen mixed in 13 hits with the nine walks and five errors from the Lady Vikings to build the lead. The big hits came in the bottom of the first when Abbey Walters laced a shot down the line and legged out a three-run home run. When she came back around to hit later in the inning, she smoked a hit into center and raced around for another three-run home run.
Nicole Wyatt also had two hits in the inning, and Morgan Sweeney stroked a two-run single during West Bladen’s 13-run explosion.
The Lady Knights added nine more runs in the second inning, and the game was called after West Columbus batted in the third.
— In Clinton on Wednesday, the Lady Eagles were shut out by Union High, 10-0.
The loss drops East Bladen to 2-1.
The Lady Spartans posted five runs in the second inning, then added three more in the fourth and two in the sixth to earn the win.
The Lady Eagles were held to just four hits
— At Fairmont on Monday, Kayla Thompson led the way for West Bladen High with an 80 on the 6,034-yard par 72 Fairmont Golf Club course and the Knights took a 349-358 non-conference win over the Golden Tornadoes.
Behind Thompson’s 80, which tied for medalist honors, was Gage Bailey with an 83, Zane Singletary with a 91 and Brett Jackson with a 95.