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Pennridge gets to 2-0 with win over Christopher Dock

SELLERSVILLE >> On a blustery afternoon at Druckenmiller Park, Kailyn Bell never wavered.

The sophomore hurler racked up nine strikeouts, keeping visiting Christopher Dock off balance with her drop ball and riser, then finished off her winning effort on the mound with an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth inning, capping an 11-1 mercy-rule victory over the Pioneers in a non-league battle Tuesday.

“It was a good win,” Bell said. “We started hitting a lot too and that was good to see because our bats hadn’t been as great lately.”

Bell’s 2-for-4 performance was part of a 13-hit day for the Rams, who swung their way to a 2-0 start.

Debby High -Pennridge's Skylar Hengeveld slammed a home run at the bottom of the 3rd inning of Tuesday's game at home against Dock.

Pennridge’s Skylar Hengeveld slammed a home run at the bottom of the third inning of the Rams’ game against Christopher Dock on Tuesday, March 29, 2016. (Debby High/For Digital Fist Media)

Bell locked things down on the mound, riddling Dock lefties with an affective screwball, and limiting the Pioneers to three hits overall. After Dock’s Sam Firely drew a walk and later scored on an error to give the Pioneers a 1-0 lead in the third, Bell retired eight of the next 11 batters she faced.

“That usually happens with me,” she said. “I get stronger as the game goes on.”

Pennridge pulled ahead with a big inning in the third. A combination of four Ram singles coupled with three Dock errors led to a 4-1 Pennridge lead, which grew to 6-1 when catcher Skylar Hengeveld sent a sky-high two-run blast over the fence in left.

The Pioneers, a perennial power in Class AA, got hits from Lanae Hunsberger, Olivia Boyle and Jill Bolton in this season opener against Class AAAA Pennridge. Theresa Beck took the loss for Dock, which will look to cut down the errors as games progress into April.

“In the first game of the season, you’re gonna have some errors, but when you pile them up together, it’s not a good thing either,” Dock coach Wayne Benner said. “But (playing Pennridge) is good for us — I like to play these kinds of teams so the girls know how good they have to get.”

Debby High Dock's Jill Bolton tagged Pennridge's Abby Chandler out as she slide into 3rd base in the 4th inning of Tuesday's game.

Christopher Dock’s Jill Bolton tags Pennridge’s Abby Chandler out as she slides into third base in the fourth inning of their game on Tuesday, March 29, 2016. (Debby High/For Digital First Media)

Grace McGinley’s double to the gap in left center keyed a four-run fourth for the Rams, who later started off the sixth with a single by McGinley and then Bell’s run-scoring single to end it.

Pennridge will take its 2-0 start into Suburban One League Continental Conference play on Thursday, when the Rams open up at Central Bucks East.

“The bats were there and that’s what matters,” Pennridge coach Carol Atkinson said. “And our pitcher did well — very well. It’s a good start to the season, and hopefully we start off the conference the same way.”

Dock has its Bicentennial Athletic League opener Thursday at New Hope Solebury.

“We have a little bit of injuries but all in all I think we’re doing well,” Benner said. “We’re fairly young, so the girls need to get some games under their belts and see how things go.”

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