Offensive onslaught: Talented veterans lead the way for East Prairie in back-to-back wins
EAST PRAIRIE, Mo. — The East Prairie softball team has undergone a stunning transformation this season, going from a struggling squad to a dominant force on the field.
The Lady Eagles (16-7) are in the midst of an unforgettable season, and its latest victories over some of the best talent in the area only further solidify its position as a top contender with the postseason right around the corner.
“The entire lineup has contributed in different ways at different times,” said East Prairie coach Jade Marcum. “They’ve realized they are strong and capable of beating great teams. They are learning to dig deep, get some grit and fight for wins. We couldn't ask for anything more than that. This has been by far the best season EP Softball has had, and they aren't finished yet.”
The team has already nearly tripled its win total from last season and registered an astounding 33 total combined hits in an 11-10 win over Scott City (15-6) on Wednesday, May 3 in its regular-season finale and a 19-3 win over South Pemiscot (10-7) on Tuesday, May 2.
Scott City established an early advantage, surging to a 4-0 lead after scoring a pair of runs in both the first and second inning.
However, East Prairie responded emphatically, generating a remarkable seven runs in the bottom of the third inning to seize control of the game.
Those runs came after a double by Kennedy Cogdill scored Ella Dunn and Kylee Gilliam; a double by Katie Brewer scored Cogdill; a double Addisyn Aters scored Brewer; a double by Chloe Jackson scored Tori Stinnett and Aters; a double by Riley Wilson scored Jackson.
The Lady Rams demonstrated resilience by adding one run in the fourth innings and an additional five runs in the sixth inning, allowing them to regain the lead with a score of 10-7.
Once more, the Lady Eagles came back with a vengeance, turning the game around with a commanding performance in the sixth inning. They scored three runs, tying the game at 10-10, and never looked back.
“Today was a battle and we knew it would be going in,” Marcum said. “We fell behind but never gave up. They wanted the win heading off into district play on Saturday. We knew Scott City was a well-coached team and would definitely hit the ball.”
The runs in the sixth inning were spearheaded by a remarkable three-run home run from Stinnett.
East Prairie secured the hard-fought victory dramatically, with a walk-off single by Brwer in the bottom of the seventh inning. The line drive to centerfield was hit with precision and power, allowing Riley Wilson to race home and touch the plate just in time to clinch the game-winning run, capping off an exhilarating performance and sparking jubilant celebration from the East Prairie faithful.
Cogdill earned the win after five innings and allowing five earned runs on nine hits with four strikeouts and two walked batters.
Wilson started the game and pitched the first two innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits with a strikeout and a walk.
“Riley Wilson threw well to start us off but we had some errors on defense, unfortunately,” Marcum said. “Senior Kennedy Cogdill asked for the ball for her last game on our home field, so we let her come in and finish it. They showed up the next time through the lineup and we put runs across the plate.”
Cogdill also put on an impressive hitting display, going 4-for-5 at the plate with two well-executed doubles, two RBIs and a run scored from her leadoff position.
Meanwhile, Brewer and Wilson also contributed significantly to the team’s success, notching three hits apiece and distinguishing themselves as the only other players with multiple hits for Lady Eagles.
East Prairie had a much smoother outing against South Pemiscot, as they dominated by outhitting the Lady Bulldogs 18-2, which translated into a convincing 19-3 victory on the scoreline.
“South Pemiscot had a good starting pitcher and it took us a bit to get adjusted,” Marcum said. “But once we did the hits came and we were able to tag on another win.”
The Lady Eagles' top performers were Stinnett (5-for-6 with four triples, one double, two RBIs and three runs), Cogdill (4-for-6 with a RBI and three runs), Brewer (3-for-5 with two doubles, four RBIs, and three runs), Alison Miller (3-for-6 with three RBIs and two runs) and Jackson (2-for-5 with a double and two runs).
Aters earned the win after 3.2 innings. She allowed two earned runs on two hits with eight strikeouts and four walked batters.
Cogdill closed the game by throwing the final 3.1 innings. She did not give up any runs or hits with seven strikeouts and one walk.
Phoenix Simmons took the loss after five innings, and allowing three earned runs on nine hits with nine strikeouts and one walk.
East Prairie clinched the Scott-Mississippi Conference Championship for the first first time in nearly two decades (2003) with the victory.
East Prairie received the No. 5 seed in the MSHSAA Class 2, District Tournament. They will face fourth-seeded Malden (14-10) on Saturday, May 6 at Portageville High School.
The Lady Eagles will look to avenge a 4-3 loss to the Green Wave from earlier this season.
EAST PRAIRIE 11, SCOTT CITY 10
W—Kennedy Cogdill. L—Mackenzie Lawless. 2B—Scott City: Olivia Ponder, Summer Wagner; East Prairie: Cogdill (2), Riley Wilson, Katie Brewer, Addisyn Aters, Chloe Jackson. 3B—Scott City: Gracie Karrenbrock. HR—East Prairie: Tori Stinnett.
EAST PRAIRIE 19, SOUTH PEMISCOT 3
W—Addisyn Aters. L—Phoenix Simmons. 2B—East Prairie: Katie Brewer (2), Chloe Jackson, Tori Stinnett; South Pemiscot: Simmons. 3B—East Prairie: Stinnett (4).