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Softball: South storms past West to snap 4-game skid
Hannah Marchman
South Forsyth junior Hannah Marchman delivers a pitch Thursday during an 11-2 win at West Forsyth High School. - photo by David Roberts

South Forsyth was looking to take out its frustrations.

West Forsyth was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

South broke out of a four-game funk Thursday as the War Eagles scored six runs in the first inning, junior pitcher Hannah Marchman pitched five innings of two-run ball and South pummeled West 11-2.

"We needed this, but I told them going into the game that you can't underestimate your opponent," South coach Leanne Brooks said. "We kind of laid it all out on the field once we played North, and after that it was like we left it on the field. So I stressed to them, you know, give it everything you've got, but take it with you when you're done."

Riley Ramirez
West Forsyth freshman Riley Ramirez fields a ball Thursday during the Wolverines' 11-2 loss to South Forsyth.

South (9-8, 4-3 Region 5-7) dropped four straight games after knocking off North Forsyth two weeks ago, and three of those losses were decided by a total of seven runs.

But on Thursday, South's first six batters reached base and the War Eagles collected eight hits in the opening frame to take a commanding lead.

"We came out there, we had a much better approach in the box and minimized the errors that we've seen the last few games," Brooks said. "That's what I told them: When you minimize those errors, you're going to see success. When you have six, seven, eight errors, it's going to be hard to win."

Eight different South hitters had at least one hit, while Katie Traynor, Chloe Traynor and Marchman enjoyed two-hit days.

Katie Traynor and Chloe Traynor each finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs.

Marchman largely kept West's offense contained, save for Grace Mangan and Emily Brown, who both finished 3-for-3 with a run scored. Mangan also had three stolen bases, and Brown had one.

"She has an ability to bounce back after something negative happens," Brooks said of Marchman. 

Ansley Chiang
South Forsyth freshman Ansley Chiang catches a pop-up Thursday during the War Eagles' 11-2 win at West Forsyth High School.
She's great at working around in the zone and keeping hitters off-balance, not knowing what to expect. We've always said that to be a successful pitcher, you need to be able to go all around, have off-speed and be able to keep them on their toes, and she does a great job of that."

The only other hit for West (2-13-1, 0-6 Region 5-7A) was a leadoff double by Abby Williams in the second inning. 

There are only four seniors between the two young teams, which means these growing pains won't last forever.

Especially so for South, which boasts a standout junior class.

But one junior, Makenna Segal, has been hampered by injury all season and can only contribute on offense. Segal hit .476 last year with 12 home runs and 31 RBIs.

"She is hurt with her shoulder, so she's been out all season because of an injury. She's been on throwing restrictions," Brooks said. "She's right now working a throwing program, so hopefully before the end of the season we'll have her back defensively. But our freshmen, they've done a great job of stepping up, because we're very young. We are. So they've done a great job of stepping up and controlling the infield."