BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
BURLINGTON – If Burlington joins the Southeast Conference in 2020 it’s almost certain to ramp up the level of competition in softball.
The 16-0 Grayhounds slapped two 11-1 five-run affairs on the Bloodhounds Tuesday night at Dick Wagner field, keeping the Hounds’ bats quiet for most of the evening.
The Hounds have now dropped four in a row after a three-game win streak last week.
Fort Madison started things well in the first inning of game one when with one out junior Olivia Williams worked a walk and then Cassie Powers hit a single off the Hounds’ Makaylyn Powers that moved Williams to second. Freshman Lauren Bailey came in to courtesy run for Powers. Senior Kamryn Bailey popped out to second for the second out and then Maycee Featheringill ripped a double to the fence that scored Williams, but Lauren Bailey was gunned down at home on the relay for the third out of the inning stranding Featheringill at 2nd.
The Grayhounds put up two in the bottom of the first as Powers hit a liner to second that went off Ivy Geerdes’ glove and into right field. Powers swiped second and Bryanna Mehaffy drew a walk. Emily Bloomer lined a single to center moving Powers and Mehaffy up. The next Hound hitter fanned and then Lydia Allen-Barnes dropped a single into right field scoring Powers. Mehaffy scored on a throwing error on the play.
Powers then settled in on the Bloodhound hitters giving up a walk to Sadie Smithburg to open the second but then fanned Dalyn Wondra, Geerdes and Jassmine Bass in order to end the second.
The Grayhounds then got to FM’s Powers with a triple, a double, and two singles to open the second. Taylor Johnson drove in Kayla Norton who tripled to open the inning with a single and Alivia Fawcett doubled with one out to plate three Grayhounds and open up a 6-1 advantage. Allen-Barnes popped to second and then Adessa Brandenburg singled to right to score Barnes before the Hounds could get a ground out to third to end the inning.
Kylee Cashman and Williams both grounded out to the left side to start the FMHS third and Powers reached on a single to right, but Lauren Bailey, courtesy running, was caught stealing at 2nd to end the top half.
Burlington put up three more in the bottom of the third hightlighted by Kayla Norton’s lead-off double and Bloomer’s sacrifice fly to Wondra in right. Fawcett popped out to first to end the inning.
The Bloodhounds left the bases full in the top of the fourth when Kamryn Bailey opened the game inning with a double. Featheringill grounded out to second for the first out moving Bailey to third. Smithburg and Wondra both worked walks off Powers, but Geerdes and Bass both struck out to end the threat.
Burlington put up another run in the fourth after starting with three straight singles. Allen Barnes was caught in a force at second on a pop that dropped just over the head of Williams at short, but Kamryn Bailey was able to make the throw to second to get Barnes who was halfway on the pop up. With two outs, Johnson singled to center to score Kinzie Parrish to set the game at 11-1. Fort Madison couldn’t get a run around in the top of the fifth despite having Cashman at third base when Featheringill grounded to third to end the game with the 10-run lead after five innings.
The Bloodhounds also dropped the nightcap 11-1 in five innings with FMHS’ only run coming from Kylee Cashman in the top of the first on an RBI single by Powers. BHS would only give up one more hit the rest of the game fanning seven.
The Hounds are 4-10 on the year and play in a junior varsity/varsity double header on the road at Wapello Wednesday night.