Lilli Richerson lines a double off the center field fence during a seven-run rally in the third inning. (by David Brazeal)

Richerson, Lady Tigers Outslug Joplin

Lilli Richerson went 4-for-4, including a two-run double during a seven-run third inning, as Republic batted its way past Joplin for its first Central Ozark Conference win, 11-7 at home Tuesday. Richerson drove in three runs, and so did Annabelle Gerhardt-Hobbs, who finished 3-for-4 and scored a run. Addison Walker also had three base hits and scored three times.

Joplin scored single runs in the first and second innings to take a 2-0 lead, and Republic got on the board in the bottom of the second when Richerson doubled home Walker to make it 2-1.

In the bottom of the third, Republic rallied to take the lead for good. Sammi Watson, Paige Elsenraat, and Piper Dishman all singled to load the bases, and Gracie Woods drove in two runs with a base hit to put Republic on top 3-2. Gerhardt-Hobbs drove in two more runs with a single, and Richerson ripped a ball off the center-field fence to plate two more and make the score 7-2. A sacrifice fly by Watson made the score 8-2 before the inning ended.

Joplin got two runs in the top of the fourth inning, then added two more on a home run by Abigayle Lowery in the fifth. That cut Republic’s lead to 8-6.

Ali Poulson drove in a run with a groundout in the bottom of the fifth inning to make it 9-6, but Joplin cut the lead to two again in the top of the sixth.

In the bottom of the sixth, Republic added two insurance runs. The first scored on an RBI single by Gerhardt-Hobbs, and the second scored on a squeeze bunt by Walker. Republic led 11-7, and that’s how the game ended.

The Lady Tigers had 18 base hits, helping them overcome four defensive errors.

Dishman picked up the win for Republic, working all seven innings and allowing seven runs — four earned — on nine hits. She struck out nine and walked four.

Republic improved to 9-5 overall and 1-2 in the COC. The Lady Tigers have won five of their last six and will travel to Carl Junction Thursday.


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