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ET Softball: Longview routs John Tyler, 19-1

By Hayden Henry
March 21, 2017 at 9:55 p.m.

Longview's #18 delivers a pitch during Tuesday's March 21, 2017 game against John Tyler.  (Les Hassell/News-Journal Photo)

Longview head softball coach Talesha Roberts is getting a little bit of everything from her team this season.

Leadership and productivity from her seniors and a strong push from the younger players that round out the roster.

"The seniors, they're the ones that are coming through for us, especially at the plate," Roberts said. "Their leadership on the field, too. They're very vocal and supportive of the younger girls to help get through some nerves.

"They're the foundation that we're building on."

With a 19-1 thumping of John Tyler in District 11-6A action at Lady Lobo Field on Tuesday night, Longview pushes its overall record to 12-8 on the year and 3-2 in the return to 6A competition.

They're doing so with a a handful of seniors, as well as several underclassmen, including three freshmen in the regular lineup.

"I'm proud of this group," Roberts said. "Our freshmen have stepped up in three key positions -- shortstop, pitcher and catcher. I've been impressed with their nerves in playing their first varsity year in 6A. Nerves of steel.

"To have some girls out there that are going to talk, to encourage when we're down, to talk us through a play, that's big for us."

Roberts talked about the Lady Lobos simply playing their game, especially at the plate. Tuesday's win was the second-straight for Longview and a follow-up to a 19-0 win over North Mesquite this past week.

"Offensively, when we're on and hitting the ball -- just executing -- the game goes our way," Roberts said of the Lady Lobos, who went 3-29 a year ago.

Junior Brooke Goynes entered Tuesday leading the Lady Lobos in batting average at .510 with a team-high 16 RBIs. She walked and scored three times against John Tyler.

Freshman Jordan McClain follows with a .490 average followed by Alex Johnson with a .487 and 15 RBIs.

Chandler Peoples, who went 2-for-3 with a two-RBI triple against the Lady Lions, is batting .468.

"We've got to keep out bats going, hits, hits, hits," Roberts said.

Inside the circle, freshman Kennedy Cameron has an 8-3 mark with a 1.66 ERA and 67 strikeouts on the season. Twin sister Kennedy, a catcher, is batting .449.

"I think our consistency in pitching deeper into games and pushing through the whole game has been a big change so far this season," Roberts said. "Our short game — being able to put the ball where it needs to be is another thing.

"Every week, it seems like we're adding to our game and improving in certain areas."

On Tuesday, John Tyler struck first in the top of the first with a run without the benefit of a hit with two Lady Lobo errors.

Goynes drew a one-out walk and scored on double to right from Miayah Miller, who made it 2-0 Longview on a JT error.

Starting pitcher Jianna Miller worked a 1-2-3 second around a leadoff error. She picked off a base runner and recorded the second out on a high popup.

In the Longview second, the Lady Lobos sent 21 batters to the plate, scoring 17 runs on six hits with the Lady Lions issuing nine walks.

Peoples' two-run triple to deep left, an RBI single from J'Maiya Davis and a two-RBI single from Miller highlighted the frame.

Miller completed the run-rule win on her own in the third, striking out two and completed a 1-3 putout.

With two-straight wins, the Lady Lobos visit Rockwall-Heath for the first time on Friday. They close the first half of 11-6A action at home against Mesquite on Tuesday.

"We can't get intimidated by who we're playing, their record or any of that," Roberts said. "If we play our game, we can play against any team.

"I have confidence in them. They have confidence in themselves that's growing. We just have to play our game."

(Follow Hayden Henry on Twitter: @hayden_h)

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