Jun. 27—MONROE — Riley DeVore used her time pitching at the junior varsity level earlier this season to fine tune her stuff in the circle. And the benefits from that have carried into varsity games recently.
DeVore continues to show improvement for PCM's softball team and another strong showing guided the Mustangs to a 12-0, three-inning win over Baxter on Thursday.
"Riley's really come on since maybe the first week of the season," PCM head softball coach Shaun Hudnut said. "She got some things straightened out in JV and how we call pitches with her, too. We are getting to the point where we feel really confident in our No. 1 and our No. 2."
DeVore (3-4) was needed in the circle for just three innings against the Bolts as the bats scored early and often and ended the game within an hour and before heavier rain started in the area.
DeVore allowed just one hit and struck out one in her three innings. She also had one hit and two RBIs at the dish.
PCM (12-12) scored five runs in the first, five in the second and ended the game with two runs in the third.
"Too many walks, too many errors and we didn't get many balls past the infield at the plate," Baxter head softball coach Crystal Bruntz said. "That's the way it's gone for us the past four games."
One of the reasons Baxter had hovered around the .500 mark this season was due committing too many errors in each game.
Against PCM, the Bolts (6-10) had two miscues but it was the walks, passed balls and wild pitches that made it easier for the host Mustangs.
Baxter pitchers walked seven, hit one and PCM base runners were on the move throughout by either stealing bases or moving up on passed balls or wild pitches.
"The girls had good at-bats, were really disciplined and laid off stuff that wasn't stuff that we should be trying to hit," Hudnut said. "When we did get something to swing at, we hit the ball pretty hard."
The Mustangs needed only five hits to score 12 runs. One of those hits was a double by Riley Johannes. It was her 13th double of the season, which is one shy of tying the school record.
Johannes' double scored two runs in the five-run second.
Sidney Shaver also had one hit, three runs, two RBIs and three stolen bases from the lead-off spot. Joslin Briles added one hit, two runs, two RBIs and two walks and Belle Hudnut chipped in one hit, two runs, one RBI and one steal.
"We have gone back to some fundamental stuff with our hitting," Hudnut said. "We came out of the gates with hot bats. We have hit a slow part of the season, which can happen sometimes. When you get confident, you can chase pitches and get away from what made you successful. We are working to get back to there and have had some good at-bats the last few games."
Paige Steenhoek also walked twice and scored two runs and Lark Drake walked once.
Evelyn Boothroyd hit a two-out single in the second for the Bolts' only hit and base runner in the game.
"At least we were swinging the bat tonight. We had eight strikeouts the night before," Bruntz said. "Putting the ball in play was an improvement from the previous game. Their shortstop made a few plays so give her credit for that.
"We are looking for something but I don't know right now."
Baxter used three pitchers. Kinley Bethards started, tossed one inning and took the loss after allowing five runs. Emie Tuhn got five outs and was pulled in the third for Holly Zahurones.