The Destin Marlins combined a couple of hits with some slick base running to shut the Shoal River Mustangs down 11-0 in middle school softball Monday evening in Destin.
“Our base running was great,” said Destin Coach Kati O’Brian. “We got on base a lot and we capitalized off what we could. We actually had several stolen bases.”
The Shoal River pitching staff struggled in the circle, delivering 13 walks to the Marlins.
And once the Marlins were on base, it was off the races.
“We just kept it moving on the bases, we were not hesitant and we attacked when we needed to attack,” O’Brian said.
In the first inning, Destin put three runs on the board. MJ Toth led with a single up the middle and then stole around to third. Olivia Payne and Izzy Douglas each walked to load the bases. Toth scored on a wild pitch and Payne stole home. Ava Smith grounded out but Douglas scored. Blakely York walked and stole around to third, but got caught trying to take home.
In the top of the second, Shoal connected for their only hit of the game. Taylor Currington singled up the middle and stole second. However, Destin eighth grade pitcher Ava Smith struck out the next three to leave Currington stranded for a no-score inning for the Mustangs.
In the third, Destin sat Shoal River down again in short order. Smith struck out the first two and then the next batter grounded out to Smith, who fielded the ball and made the throw to first for the third out.
In the bottom half, Destin put four more runs on the board. With one out, Douglas and Smith walked. York struck out and then Mykean Pope blasted a double up the middle for two RBIs. Pope eventually scored on a passed ball and Addy Taylor walked. Up next, Annabelle Shackleford took one deep to left and Taylor scored for a 7-0 game.
In the top of the fourth, Destin shut the Mustangs down with two strike outs and a pop fly.
Destin batted through the lineup in the bottom half and picked up four runs on walks, stolen bases and errors. Destin led 11-0.
Smith put an end to the game in the top of the fifth with three straight strikeouts, bringing her total to 11 for the game.
“We capitalized off a lot of passed balls. It was just a lot of heads-up, crafty base running and we scored the runs when we needed to,” O’Brian said.
Up next for the undefeated Marlins is a 4 p.m. game at home Wednesday against the Ruckel Rams.