By Jeremy Costello
Gazette Sports Editor
MULVANE—Maybe the Orioles remembered the sting of losing a 9-0 lead to Mulvane in last season's epic 16-15 extra-inning loss.
Or maybe the Orioles simply were highly motivated to beat their rival from the start.
Either way, Augusta's softball team made it clear it meant business Tuesday at Mulvane. The Orioles already had jumped out to a fast start and built a 3-0 lead after two innings and a 7-0 lead after five. In the sixth inning, the Orioles buried any chance of another miraculous comeback with a seven-run sixth inning on way to a 14-0 run-rule win.
The Orioles put up four runs in the second inning for another fast start in Game 2 and held on for a 6-3 win to get a big road sweep of the Wildcats Tuesday in damp, cold, windy conditions.
Not even standout pitcher Destynee Donaldson had a chance to slow down the Orioles' offensive attack on this day. All nine Oriole starters had at least one base hit in the opening game. The Orioles hit to the opposite field, down the lines and even one over the fence.
Not bad for a team that hadn't played in nearly two weeks.
"For them to come out the way they came out today is showing what our practice is doing for us," coach Shane Steinkamp. said. "You put up 14 runs against Destynee Donaldson, it's a pretty good game."
Destiny Williams started the day with a base hit to right field, and the barrage was on. Katy Nordman hit a 2-RBI single to start the scoring in the first inning. After Courtney Phillips hit a double, Morgan Kirk hit an opposite-field RBI single for a 3-0 lead in the second.
The Orioles had five base hits the opposite way in all, something Steinkamp said the team had been working on.
Brooke Eberhardt all but silenced Mulvane's bats all game. The Wildcats only managed four hits off her, and all of them came with two outs, anyway. Eberhardt had four strikeouts and two walks.
In the fifth, the Orioles broke open the game with four runs. Kalie Robinson scored on a throwing error, and Casady Marlnee later hit an RBI single, which turned into an inside-the-park home run after Mulvane made a throwing error.
Abby Tipton then blasted a solo home run to dead centerfield, her first home run of her career.
"I was really excited," Tipton said. "It seemed like everyone really wanted to play today because Mulvane is one of the top teams we wanted to beat."
The Orioles still weren't done. Augusta rattled off six straight hits against Donaldson, five of which drove in runs as the Orioles put away the game in convincing fashion.
Nordman finished 3-for-3 with a double and four RBIs. Marlnee and Kirk were 2-for-4 with two RBIs apiece. Tipton was 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Jenna Lynch added a pair of hits.
"I try not to think about what's going to happen. You just go up there and have confidence and know what you want to do," Nordman said about her approach at the plate.
The Orioles wasted no time getting on a roll in Game 2. They hit three singles and scored a run the first inning before taking control in the second. Kylie Wesbrooks hit a single and later scored on an RBI single by Kirk.
Mulvane didn't help itself. The Wildcats committed two errors and had two passed balls in the inning.
The Wildcats got their first runs of the day in the third when Ashley Wilson hit a 2-RBI single to score Haley Hays and Amanda Hively. During the inning, Augusta pitcher Megan Hayes had a hit come straight back at her and hit her. But she showed toughness and resolve by finishing the inning and the game.
"It's a mental and physical toughness. I told her we could bring Brooke in. She said no we can't," Steinkamp said with a laugh.
Hayes allowed six hits, struck out three and walked just one batter.
The Orioles now are 4-0 on the season and dropped Mulvane to 4-4. Augusta hosts Circle Thursday afternoon.