SOUTH CHINA — Three games into the season, it’s going just about as well as the Lawrence softball team hoped it would.

The Bulldogs got another strong effort in the circle from sophomore Sage Reed and supported her with a 19-hit attack on Monday afternoon, running away from Erskine Academy in a 17-2 win shortened to five innings by the 10-run rule. Freshman center fielder Kaylie Elkins went 5 for 5 with a triple, four runs scored and a pair of stolen bases.

“My role is to get on base and kind of start things off,” Elkins said. “I just try and focus on getting on base. I want to do whatever I can to get on.”

Reed was dominant in her third career start, all of them this season. Despite the bitter cold and brutal winds, the righty allowed only two hits and struck out 13. On three different occasions Reed struck out the side — including six straight to close out the game — and retired nine Eagles in a row to finish things off.

Reed didn’t allow an earned run. Erskine scratched out single runs in the first and third innings, as Emma Fortin and Haley Acedo each crossed the plate courtesy of passed balls.

“There’s good stuff in the future for us, that’s for sure,” said Lawrence head coach Joey Marcoux, whose team improved to 2-1. “I had never seen her pitch, because we didn’t have a season last year, but she came out in preseason and she was really impressive. We have two or three (pitchers) vying for that spot, but she’s the one that deserves to be there.”


Reed has amassed 45 strikeouts in three games, and she tossed a no-hitter at Mount View in her high school debut in the season opener.

“(The cold) makes it so much worse on your arm,” Reed said. “I think it’s just practice and repetition. I like my curveball when it’s on, and it was on today.”

But while Reed’s effort was impressive, the ability of a deep Lawrence lineup shouldn’t be lost in the shuffle.

The first four Bulldog batters of the afternoon all reached base and scored, and six of the 17 runs the visitors scored came with two outs. Jazmin Johnson was 2 for 2 with a pair of walks, a double, four runs scored and two batted in, and Sarah Poli went 3 for 4 with a double and three RBIs.

Each of the nine spots in the Lawrence order collected at least one base hit and eight of the nine spots scored at least one run.

“Every single time you hit the ball your hands were cramping,” Elkins said of the cold weather. “I kind of used it as motivation to hit the ball and try and get out of this game.”


Lawrence pounced early in this one, posting a five-spot in the first and scoring six more in the third to break it wide open.

“It’s huge to get your leadoff hitter on, it’s really huge,” Marcoux said. “When you’re the visiting team and can put a two-spot on the board, that’s a big deal. … Today we got more than two, which is obviously, uh, better.”

Monday’s recipe for success — good pitching, a quick start and a relentless offense — is how the Bulldogs hope the rest of the season goes.

“We go way down the lineup,” Marcoux said. “We’re really deep. I’ve got juniors hitting in the eight and nine spots, and we’ve got freshmen and sophomores who can hit the ball. I put them at the top of the lineup, and so far they’re proving me right.”

Erskine pitcher Hannah Huff did her best to keep the Eagles in the game, but she wasn’t helped by seven errors in the field behind her. Eight of the runs Huff allowed were unearned.

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