On the heels of double-digit scoring in their first District 5-4A win, the Denton Lady Broncos ran into a defensive buzz saw in Fort Worth Brewer pitcher Sarah Miller, who struck out 14 en route to a 6-0 victory Thursday at Denton High.
Miller had Denton chasing pitches all around the strike zone throughout the game, striking out the side three times while allowing just three hits.
“They’ve definitely got a strong lady in the pitching circle,” Denton coach Rhana Ramos said. “She proved that today. I don’t necessarily believe she’s unhittable. We just didn’t work to get ahead of the count early and make sure we were selective with our pitches. We struggled with that today — being more selective on the good pitches and not swinging at the ones out of the zone.”
The Lady Bears, now 4-0 in district play, scored two quick runs off two errors in the first inning.
Brewer’s Delilah Gallegos reached on an infield hit in the third, allowing Destiny Chavarria to score on a throwing error by Denton pitcher Natasha Kissell to make it 3-0. Carissa Luna grounded into an RBI fielder’s choice, putting Brewer ahead 4-0.
“We didn’t come out prepared for our competition,” Ramos said. “We made several errors in the first inning, and in the third inning they got ahead of us. Our team chemistry and camaraderie were not there today. We gave them a majority of those runs. Even though we didn’t produce offensively, the game should have been a lot closer with better defense. We didn’t compete today.”
After Brewer’s Krystal Dodson and Ashlyn Williams reached on singles to start the fourth, an error on an attempted putout at first base yielded another run.
Chavarria doubled just inside the left field line to start the fifth and Miller’s deep shot to center was dropped, giving the Lady Bears the final 6-0 margin.
Next up for the Lady Broncos (12-4-1, 1-3 district) is a road game against Azle on Tuesday, and Ramos said her team isn’t going to get any breaks during the first part of its district schedule.
“[Azle] will be just as competitive as Brewer and Lake Dallas,” Ramos said. “I’ve talked to a couple of our district coaches, and all of them have said that the top four teams that come out of our district are going to be successful two or three [playoff] rounds deep.”
With the Lady Broncos having shown power with 13 hits in their five-inning, 12-0 victory over Wichita Falls, Ramos is confident her team’s offense can erupt at any time.
“I feel like we were one inning away from opening up and unleashing on somebody,” Ramos said. “We produced really well at Old High [Wichita Falls] and had three home runs in one inning. We executed and played defense really well. We’re capable of it, we just have to put all the pieces together.”
PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
FORT WORTH BREWER 6, DENTON 0
WP — Sarah Miller. LP — Natasha Kissell. 2B — B: Destiny Chavarria. 3B — B: Shannon Rhodes.