On a gray, overcast, and late winter day, the Booneville Lady Bearcats traveled to Paris for an anticipated high school softball match-up with the Paris Lady Eagles. And for five innings, the game was a good as many thought it would be, but then Booneville exploded in the top half of the fifth inning to eventually go on to win 8-2 over Paris.
Booneville was led by their sensational sophomore pitcher, Lexi Franklin, who dominated Paris hitters all day. Franklin went the distance in the circle, giving up just two runs to a Paris offense that had been scoring in large numbers in their previous, early-season victories. Franklin was simply overwhelming to the Paris hitters. The Lady Eagles were able to scatter a few hits, including a deep fly ball to left center by Jayden Wells, but were unable to get key hits with runners on base to close the gap.
Lady Eagles senior Karsyn Tencleve went the distance in the loss for Paris. Tencleve pitched well and battled every hitter, but did not have the benefit of run support from the Paris hitters against Franklin’s pitching. Tencleve has pitched well this season and will be counted on heavily as the Lady Eagles play for the opportunity to make another post-season drive to the state tournament.
The Lady Eagles will travel to Cossatot River on Thursday for another conference match-up with the Lady Eagles. Booneville will take a break from conference play on Thursday when they go to Pottsville to play the Class 4A Lady Apaches.
The 2022 season is young, and both Paris and Booneville figure to be in the mix late in the season when post-season play begins with district, regional, and state tournaments. Both Paris, behind the pitching of senior Karsyn Tencleve, and Booneville, behind Lexi Franklin, have more opportunities ahead of them for what promises to be another great year of Class 3A-4 softball.
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