Triton’s softball and girls soccer teams both looked steady in shutout wins at home Monday against Midway. The softball team won 6-0 thanks to solid pitching and timely hitting, and the soccer team looked comfortable in possession thoughout most of the 3-0 victory.
Slaughter gets it done
Triton coach Mark Whitman didn’t feel that his pitcher, Gracyn Slaughter, had her best stuff in Thursday’s win over West Johnston. But after Monday’s shutout against Midway, her change-up was the talk of the night.
“That was Gracyn tonight,” Whitman said. “When her change-up is on, she’s as good as anybody. [Assistant coach] Louie [Slaughter] is doing a great job calling pitches. He’s been a godsend, him helping coach this year.”
Even Midway coach Leigh Ann Smith couldn’t help but marvel at the Triton sophomore’s offspeed stuff.
“That first pitcher, that’s a nasty change-up,” Smith said. “We just couldn’t lay off of it tonight. She had so much confidence in it, she was throwing it for the first pitch against my strongest batters. And then we had some base running miscues. Not what I wanted to come in here and do. I at least wanted us to score some runs. But that’s a tough team to score runs against.”
Slaughter went six strong innings, giving up just three hits and a walk while striking out seven to pick up the win for Triton (2-1). Junior Caroline Marshall closed out the seventh, giving up just one hit on a bunt single.
Alexis Howard and Kaila Cooney did the damage in the middle of the lineup with three hits apiece. Howard hit a double and scored a pair of runs, and Cooney had one RBI and one run scored. Freshman Reagan Bradham had her second straight perfect night at the dish, going 2-for-2 with one RBI and one run scored.
Not only was Slaughter dominant on the mound, but she also had the big hit of the night with a three-run double in the bottom of the third.
Ella Layn had one hit and one RBI. Tatiana Muniz had one hit. Tyler Grace Gamblin and Tristan Ennis each scored as courtesy runners.
Sophomore starter Miranda Holmes was saddled with the loss for Midway (2-1). Holmes tossed five innings and gave up two earned runs on eight hits. Sophomore Mackenzie Maynor came in and pitched the last inning. She gave up three hits but got out of the inning unscathed to keep it 6-0 going into the top of the seventh.
Caitlyn Holland, Jega Dapuyen, Sydney Williams and Bella Bryant each had one hit for Midway.
Triton scored its first run in the second when Bradham walked, moved to second on a Mackenzie Reid sacrifice and scored on a hit by Layn.
The Hawks put up a crooked number in the third. After Muniz got on via an error and Howard singled, Cooney hit into a fielder’s choice, but Britney Ireland was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Slaughter, who cleared them with a double. Bradham drove in Gamblin, Slaughter’s courtesy runner, with an RBI-single to make it 5-0. Triton tacked on the final run in the fifth when Howard doubled and scored on a hit by Cooney.
Midway only put one runner in scoring position, and had its best chance of the game to score in the top of the third with a runner on third and two outs. But Ireland made a snappy throw to third to pick off the runner and end the inning.
“I’ve been very pleased,” Whitman said. “I think I’ve got the combination where I need it right now. We’re executing the plays we need to make. Pitching was outstanding tonight. We did all the right things tonight. We got hits when we needed them... I don’t want to jell quick, but I want us to continue to improve every game like we’re doing.”
Hernandez bags two
Triton got its second straight shutout victory Monday, following up Thursday’s 6-0 drubbing of South Johnston with a comfortable 3-0 win over Midway.
Sophomore forward Sheila Hernandez scored a brace in the opening half. The first goal came unassisted with about 12 minutes in, and the second came less than five minutes later off an assist from junior Wendy Campos.
Sophomore Billie Kate Pope got the third goal in the final seconds of the game off an assist from fellow sophomore Elizabeth Lopez to make it 3-0.
“I was a little frustrated during the game, because we had a lot of chances that we didn’t finish,” said Triton coach Brian Foster. “I wanted us to keep pushing, and I was pleased that we finally broke though at the end of the game. Overall I thought we played hard, we just didn’t always play smart. But that’s part of being a young team.”
Midway junior keeper Jordan Wallum had a nice game in goal with nine saves. Triton played two keepers. Sophomore Peyton Briggs came up with two saves, and senior Caitlyn Ahl made one save.
“I’m proud of the way our back line played when Midway was able to get forward,” Foster said. “Midway played hard, their spacing was good and they were fighting hard to get forward at the end, which is actually what helped us score... We’re both really young teams, so I appreciated the fact that neither team was sitting back. Both teams played really hard, and I’m sure it’ll be a good game when we play them again next week.”