The Rolla softball team opened their 2018 season by hosting Cuba on Tuesday, Aug. 28. The Lady Bulldogs dominated from jump street, rolling to a 22-6 victory in just four innings.

Jordan Watkins started on the mound for the Lady Bulldogs and got into a little bit of a bind in the first. Cuba was able to load the bases to open the game, but she recorded back to back strikeouts and a flyout to centerfield to get out of the jam without allowing a run. The offense took care of the rest in the bottom of the inning. 

Keira Chrisco opened the game by smacking a triple. Emalee Grooms followed that with a walk and the first run of the game came in when Lauren Moersch reached on an error. The runs kept flowing when Kristynn Hufford smoked a two-run double, making it to third base on the throw home. Hufford then came in to score when the next three batters drew walks. With the bases still loaded, Chloe Wood hit a two-run single. After two outs and another walk, Cuba was forced to change pitchers before the first inning came to an end. Moersch added a two-run single, followed by another RBI single from Hufford, stretching the Rolla lead to 9-0 through just an inning of play. 

Watkins ran into a little trouble in the second inning. The bases were again loaded before Rolla was able to record and out. Cuba then laid down a bunt and the runner beat the throw to the plate to put Cuba on the board. The Lady Wildcats put a total of six runs on the board in the inning thanks to a few miscues, but the Rolla lead stood strong at 9-6. Cuba wouldn't score again after the second. 

The bottom of the second and the top of the third came and went without much offense to speak of, but Rolla started to put the game away in the bottom of the third. First Hufford scored on an error, before an RBI from Watkins. Reagan Reedy followed that with a three-run triple and Keira Chrisco capped off the inning with an RBI single, which stretched the Rolla lead to 15-6. Rolla wasn't done there. Another big inning in the bottom of the fourth saw Rolla score six more runs to finish the game with the mercy rule 22-6. 

Watkins ended the game with 10 strikeouts held Cuba to no runs in three of her four innings of work. All but two of her outs in the game were strikeouts. 

Offensively, Hufford led the was with four hits, two of which were doubles, and three runs driven in. Moersch added three hits and four RBI. Keira Chrisco had three hits, including a triple, and three RBI, while her sister Kassidy drove in three runs. Reedy had a pair of extra base hits, a double and a triple, while driving in three runs. Grooms walked twice and had a triple to go along with an RBI. Wood drove in a pair of runs, while Watkins and Maycie Montgomery each drove in one batter.

“The Lady Bulldogs were fired up for the season opener. Proud of the teamwork and intensity these girls performed and the hard work continued each day," said head coach Jessika Zink Cook. "We will continue to improve and polish up our game.”

The Lady Bulldog JV also played well, winning 10-1. Callie Harmon and Makenzie McCarter split time on the mound on the wau to the win. McCarter also had a great game at the plate with a pair of base hits. Zoey Barr had an inside the park home run, Laney Hoffman had a triple and two RBI, while Bailey Pierce and Ramona Giddens each drove in a run. 

The Lady Bulldogs were scheduled to play Helias on Thursday, but that game was cancelled due to weather and moved to Sept. 19. Next up for Rolla will be a trip to cross-town rival St. James on Wednesday, Sept. 5.