Kelly Carpenter probably wishes she could pitch against North Forsyth every day.
The West Forsyth junior shut out North on Aug. 28. It was more of the same on Tuesday night: Carpenter held the Lady Raiders to five hits over seven scoreless innings as West earned a 6-0 home win to move closer to a state playoff berth.
West (13-11 overall) improved to 9-6 in Region 6-AAAAAA. South Forsyth’s 3-2 win over Northview (8-7 Region 6) in extra innings Tuesday gave the Wolverines sole possession of third place.
“Huge win tonight,” West coach Justin Rickett said. “Obviously the goal is to win out from here, but at this point we just need to take care of business in one or two of our last three games to get in.”
The Lady Wolverines made North (8-14, 7-8) pay for its inability to score with the bases loaded and one out in the fourth. Already trailing 2-0, North loaded the bases on an error, an infield dribbler and a single to right, but Carpenter (WP, 7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 6 K) induced two lazy fly outs to escape with no damage done.
“We’ve had some games this season where the ball hasn’t bounced our way and things just haven’t quite gone right, and then that has snowballed,” Rickett said. “Our girls have matured a bit so now they know that just because something bad happens, it doesn’t have to continue to be bad. We’re growing up and getting there.”
West then broke it open one half-inning later. Courtney Canady (1-3) doubled to left-center to score Hayla Seitz (2-3, 2B, R) and shortstop Bailley Concatto (2-3, 2 R, 2B, 2 RBI) drove a looping double to deep center that scored Canady and Randee Bernstein (1-2, R, SB) for a 5-0 lead. Peyton Erb (1-3, 2 RBI, R) threaded a double just fair down the third base line to drive in Concatto and provide the final 6-0 margin.
The freshman- and sophomore-laden Lady Raiders now face an uphill battle in their quest for the fourth and final state playoff spot out of Region 6. North sits at 7-8, one game behind Northview, with home games against Lambert (14-1 in the region) and South (13-2) still looming.
Left on the schedule for West: Alpharetta (4-11), Habersham Central (7-8) and Chattahoochee (6-9).
“We got a big win on the road last Thursday and made it two in a row tonight,” Rickett said. “It was really the first complete game we’ve put together in a while — hitting, pitching, and fielding well. Now, we have to keep that up.”