Simpson hurls two-hitter in win over IR

DAGSBORO – In a 6-2 victory over Indian River Thursday, April 20, Lake Forest put up its second-lowest run total of the season.

With senior Kerrigan Simpson in the pitcher’s circle, it didn’t matter.

Simpson followed up her strong outing in a 14-4 victory over defending state champion Caravel Academy last week with an equally impressive two-hitter against Indian River (4-3).

In seven innings of work, Simpson surrendered two runs on two hits while striking out nine IR batters.

“We came out fired up,” Simpson said. “Coming out of the Caravel game I felt pretty good, and then today I came out feeling pretty good confidence-wise. So I just went out there and threw.”

Senior Kerrigan Simpson struck out nine IR batters while surrendered just two runs on two hits in Thursday’s 6-2 win (The Journal/Ben Heck).

“She was just on and hitting her spot today,” head coach Ashlie Tatman said. “She did an amazing job. She really honed in today. She didn’t let that one home run off her get to her, she came back the next batter and got a first-pitch strike. She’s just been really focused and mentally tough.”

With four runs on the board in the first two innings, Lake took the lead early on and never looked back.

Junior third baseman Brooke Glanden hit a pair of home runs, her fourth and fifth homers of the season, to lead Lake’s offense.

Though Lake’s power surge continued with Glanden’s two homers, Lake’s offense wasn’t up to par with the team’s previous double-digit games.

As a team, the Lady Spartans left 11 runners on base against Indian River.

“We just need to think more about the situation when on offense,” coach Tatman said. “We need to think more of getting that run in. I think the girls get a little excited when the bases are loaded with two outs, they want to hit a home run or get a big hit. We have some work to do.”

Glanden finished the game going 2-for-4 and drove in five of the Spartans’ six runs.

Brooke Glanden is greeted at home plate by her teammates after hitting one of her two home runs Thursday against IR (The Journal/Ben Heck).

“Our biggest thing is intensity,” Glanden said. “We have to keep our intensity up and do that all throughout the game, not just stop when we get ahead. That’s our biggest thing, and we’ll definitely work on that and try to come out strong every game.”

Even with the offensive struggles Thursday afternoon, Lake has had enough power in the lineup to carry the offense.

If it’s not Glanden hitting home runs, it’s Simpson. If it’s not Simpson hitting home runs, it’s junior infielder Kayla Thompson hitting home runs.

So far this season Lake’s offense has produced at least one home run in each of the first eight games and has now had five straight multi-home run games.

Simpson has six home runs this season, while Glanden’s two-homer game puts her at five for the year. Thompson has three and junior shortstop Brittany Baker has one.

But coach Tatman knows the team can’t rely solely on home runs from her offense.

“It’s definitely a nice security blanket when we have some big hitters in the lineup who can get the job done,” coach Tatman said. “But any day it’s anyone’s game, so you can’t rely on home runs. We need to be more aggressive with putting the ball in play.”

Next for Lake is a road game at Delmarva Christian High School in Georgetown, DE for a match-up with the 7-1 Royals on Monday, April 24.

Sports Editor Ben Heck can be reached at bheck@newszap.com.

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