EC Softball Goes 3-0 at Myrtle Beach on Day 1

MYRTLE BEACH –  The Eureka softball team is off to a 3-0 start to the season after sweeping the first day of the Fastpitch Spring Dreams Classic at Myrtle Beach on Sunday.

The Red Devils' day began with a 6-0 shutout victory over Centenary (N.J.) in the morning.

They followed that with a 3-1 triumph over Penn St.-Schuylkill and concluded the afternoon with a 7-3 victory over St. Joseph (Conn.).

GAME 1: Eureka 6, Centenary 0

Junior transfer Torre Koontz (Lakewood, Ill./Shelbyville) notched a shutout victory in her Red Devils debut on Sunday, holding Centenary scoreless while allowing seven hits and one walk.

She tallied two strikeouts and didn't give up any extra-base hits.

EC recorded eight hits and the bulk of their scoring in the first inning, posting four runs on four hits and one Centenary error.

After Sydney Shubert (Canton, Ill./Canton) reached on an error, Bailey Tibbetts (Pekin, Ill./Pekin) put the Red Devils on the board with an RBI single up the middle.

Faith Bachtold (Fairbury, Ill./Prairie Central) drove in Tibbetts three batters later, Adrianna Zeman (La Salle, Ill./Peru) plated two more with an RBI single that gave EC an early 4-0 lead.

Shubert delivered an RBI sac fly in the fourth, and Gabby Wood (Bartonville, Ill./Limestone) scored on an RBI groundout by Koontz in the seventh.

Five Red Devils contributed a hit for the maroon and gold, while Zeman went 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Shubert and Bachtold each had two stolen bases and Wood had one.

GAME 2: Eureka 3, Penn St.-Schuylkill 1

In her first start of the season, EC's returning ace, Erin Smith (Dunlap, Ill./Dunlap), held Penn St.-Schuylkill to one run on just three hits and one walk while fanning six.

The Red Devils took the lead in the first inning after Allison Cagley (Fairbury, Ill./Prairie Central) came up with an RBI single.

Penn St.-Schuylkill tied the game in the second inning after Ashley Pentz reached on an error and eventually scored on a passed ball.

EC didn't regain the lead again until the team chalked up two runs on four hits and one error in the fifth.

With two on and two out, Tibbetts knocked an RBI single to right field to give EC a 3-1 advantage. Smith retired six of the nine last batters and struck out the last two to seal the win.

Shubert and Tibbetts had two hits apiece in the win.

GAME 3: Eureka 7, St. Joseph 3

Eureka recorded the most runs and hits in the last game of the day, scoring seven on 11 hits.

Tibbetts went 3-for-4 with a pair of RBIs, while also collecting the win in her first start in the circle for the Red Devils. The junior transfer allowed three runs on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings before handing it over to Sidney Wightman (Waterloo, Ill./Gibault Catholic) to get the last two outs of the game. She also had two strikeouts.

Raelyn Payne (Lexington, Ill./Lexington) and Shubert each went 2-for-3 with an RBI apiece, while Wightman went 2-for-4 with one.

Shubert, Tibbetts and Morgan Ledbetter (Hanna City, Ill./Elmwood) each had a double.

Ledbetter got things started with an RBI double following singles by Payne and Shubert in the first inning.

St. Joseph got one back in the bottom half, but EC came back with three runs on three hits and an error in the second.

Payne produced an RBI sacrifice fly with two runners in scoring position, and Shubert and Tibbetts had back-to-back RBI doubles.

Tibbetts' second RBI came in the fourth on a single that scored Payne and gave EC a 6-2 lead.

It stayed that way until the teams traded runs in the seventh.

Wightman singled with a runner on in the seventh, then Frankie Ferrante drove in a run for the opposition with an RBI triple in the bottom half, but Wightman got a pair of groundouts to strand two runners before it could become a rally.

UP NEXT: The Red Devils (3-0) will continue Fastpitch Spring Dreams Classic play on Holy Family at 12:30 p.m. and Lycoming at 2:30 p.m.