With the way the rain was pouring down Friday afternoon, there was a concern for Covington that a huge double-header against Division I power Centerville would be cancelled.
Fortunately, the rain subsided overnight and Centerville was willing to make the one hour trek to Covington because its own field was unplayable.
“We (the coaches) talked about it and both of us really wanted to get these games in,” said Covington coach Dean Denlinger. “Our field handles water really well and Centerville was willing to come here, so we got it ready first thing this morning. It turned into a great day for softball.”
Playing a program the caliber of Centerville is something Denlinger looks forward to because he likes to see his team tested by the best competition available, win or lose.
Denlinger was pleased with what he saw out of his team as the Lady Buccs swept the Elks in the double header, winning the first game 8-1 and the second contest 9-6.
“That’s a really good team we played today,” Denlinger said. “Those two pitchers are as good as we’ll see all year. They’re going to win a lot of games this year and probably make a run in the tournament.”
Centerville got on the board first in the opening contest off a towering home run in the top of the second inning, but that would be the lone run for the Elks in the contest as Morgan Arbogast held Centerville to just three hits.
Meanwhile, Covington had issues through three innings timing up the speed of the Centerville pitcher, but once the Lady Buccs made adjustments at the plate the hits started piling up. In all, Covington had seven hits in the game.
Covington scored five runs in the fourth and three more in the fifth with the big hit coming on a two-run home run by senior Cassidy Cain.
Both teams racked up hits in bunches in the second game with Covington recording 12 hits and Centerville connecting for ten hits.
The Lady Buccs scored two runs in the first, three in the second and another in the third to take a 6-1 lead, but Centerville responded with two runs in the fifth to cut the deficit to 6-3.
The offensive fireworks continued as both teams scored a run in the sixth and then Covington put two runs on the board in the top of the seventh to take a 9-4 lead with three outs to go. Once again, the big hit came on a long ball as Brooke Gostomsky went yard for a solo home run.
But Centerville made it interesting by plating two runs and having two runners on with their best hitter coming to the plate with two outs. Fortunately, Covington was able to get the popup to end the contest and preserve the 9-6 win.
“That team can hit the ball well,” Denlinger said of Centerville. “They had the tying run at the plate in the last inning and Brooke (Gostomsky) did a nice job of hitting her spot to force the popup.”
Gostomsky went the distance in the second game to record her first win of the season.
“We played well today, especially defensively,” praised Denlinger of his team. “We also did a nice job of pushing the envelope on the base paths and I think our team speed made a difference. We took a lot of bases today.”
It was an impressive afternoon, especially considering the caliber of team that was in the other dugout.
“This is why we schedule teams like this, so we can see where we are and find things we need to work on,” said Denlinger. “We struggled a little early, but did a nice job of shortening up at the plate. We hit the ball well against two really nice pitchers.”
Now 1-2 on the year, the Elks host Springfield tonight at 5:00 at CHS.