Home Local Sports Steen, Leviner propel Lady Raiders to late-game comeback

Steen, Leviner propel Lady Raiders to late-game comeback

Senior Macy Steen shouts in celebration after her RBI double in Friday's win. (Kyle Pillar, sports editor)

ROCKINGHAM — Resorting to small ball late in Friday’s game, coupled with a defensive stand in the top of the seventh, the Richmond Senior High School softball team earned a one-run win.

Returning to their home diamond for the second time in three nights, the Lady Raiders used two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to break a tie and win 4-3.

Senior pitcher Quston Leviner pitched her second consecutive complete game to start the season, and allowed three runs (two earned) on nine hits. She also struck out nine batters.

No strikeouts were more important than her final two, as she sat down Emma Parnell and Montanna Mabe looking to end the game.

Montgomery Central, which had already scored a run in the top of the seventh to cut its deficit to a run, was threatening with the bases loaded. 

Head coach Mike Way intentionally walked Morgan Maness with one out to load the bags, and his trust in Leviner to get the job done paid off.

Senior pitcher Quston Leviner deal a pitch during her second win of the season on Friday. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

The Lady Raiders struggled at the plate against Parnell, who threw 4.1 innings and collected five strikeouts and allowed just two hits.

Richmond didn’t register its first base runner until the No. 9 hitter junior Addy Hollingsworth drew a two-out walk in the bottom of the third.

A leadoff double followed by a single in the top of the second led to Montgomery Central’s first run. A single to shallow center field from Kenley Morse scored Parnell from third.

The Lady Raiders found themselves down 2-0 in the top of the fourth when a throwing error with two runners on allowed Meredith Spivey (double) to score.

Some two-out magic in the home half led to two hits and two runs for Richmond, knotting the score at 2-2.


Senior Makayla Parks became the team’s second base runner of the game with a walk, and moved to second when a passed ball made its way to the backstop. 

Senior Macy Steen dug in and roped an RBI double to center field to plate Parks, the first of her two RBIs.

Running for Steen was sophomore Trinity Lockhart, who tied the game when junior Ryelan Lyerly beat out an infield single to second base in the next at-bat.

Junior Ryelan Lyerly connects for an RBI infield single in Friday’s win. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

Leviner stranded a runner on base in the fifth and retired the Lady Timberwolves (1-2) in order in the sixth.

Notching their final two runs in the bottom of the sixth off Mabe (1.2 innings, two unearned runs, one hit), Leviner started the frame with a single to left field. Junior Katie Way reached safely after she was plunked by a pitch to put two on with no outs.

Parks laid down a sacrifice bunt to Mabe, but did her job in moving both Leviner and Way into scoring position.

Sticking with small ball, Way called on Steen for another bunt in the next at-bat. Rolling one down the third base line, Steen reached safely when Spivey committed a throwing error.

That miscue let Leviner score and Lockhart, who was running for Way, scored from second. Steen slid under the tag at third base.

A hit-by-pitch, a sac bunt and a single led to an RBI double from Kyndal Rush in the top of the seventh, setting up the late-game theatrics by Leviner in the circle.

Capping the first week of play 2-0, and improving Richmond’s varsity spring sports teams’ record to 6-0, the Lady Raiders will begin Sandhills Athletic Conference play on Tuesday.

Set to travel to Southern Lee High School (3-0), action will begin at 6 p.m.

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Kyle Pillar is a 16-time North Carolina Press Association award-winning sports editor with The Richmond Observer. Follow the sports department on Twitter @ROSports_ for the best in-depth coverage of Richmond County sports.