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Helmich, Dempsey pace Lady Cards

March 14, 2013

Harmony Grove freshman LJ Helmich turns on a pitch and launches it for a two-run homer against Poyen on Tuesday. The Lady Cardinals thumped the Lady Indians 19-1 in rout to a 7-1 start to the season. Helmich went 3 for 4 at the dish with two RBIs. Special to The Saline Courier

POYEN - The 2013 softball season, though it is still early, has been good to the Harmony Grove Lady Cardinals thus far. After winning 6 of its first 7 contests, including a 6-1 win over Arkadelphia on Monday, Harmony Grove got back to work on Tuesday, adding yet another win to the stat sheet.
With red-hot bats and golden gloves, the Lady Cardinals took down the Lady Indians of Poyen with a 19-1 rout on the road. Led by great hitting and stellar pitching, the Lady Cardinals paced their way to a 7-1 start to the year.
“We hit the ball really, really well,” Head Coach Sammi Massey said. “I am excited about that. We got 14 hits and that is pretty dang good in a five-inning game.”
Harmony Grove wasted no time getting on the board scoring three runs in the opening frame thanks to three errors. Holly Drombetta, LJ Helmich and Kristen Dempsey all scored in the first inning.
As for the defense for the Lady Cardinals, not much was needed. With Dempsey in the circle, she was nearly unhittable all night. Dempsey sat down 9 of her first 10 batters faced, including striking out four straight between the first and second inning. Poyen reached base for the first time in the third via the walk but was left stranded.
Poyen used an error to its advantage in the fourth, scoring its only run of the game. Harmony Grove, however, was far from finished with the scoreboard. Harmony Grove added two runs in the second before adding four in the third. Helmich launched a two-run homer in the third to add to an already dominating offense.
“The whole freshman group has been such a big contribution to our team,” Massey said. Helmich is just a freshman this season.
“(Drombetta and Dempsey) are really stepping it up, too,” Massey said. “I really don’t have a weak hitter in my lineup right now. That is a really good.”
After adding two more runs in the fourth, the Lady Cardinals sent 12 hitters to the dish in the fifth, scoring eight runs on eight hits to finish Poyen off 19-1.
“Overall, I am really pleased,” Massey said.
Dempsey finished the game with seven strikeouts and gave up just two hits.
“Our pitching is really good right now also,” Massey added.
Dempsey and Helmich both went 3 for 4 at the plate and combined for seven RBIs in the game. Dempsey drove in five.
Harmony Grove now sits at 7-1 on the young season, but knows that 5-3A action is lurking just around the corner.
“I am really excited about getting into conference play,” Massey said. “I really enjoy this team. They are a good group of kids and a lot of fun.”
Harmony Grove takes on Glen Rose when it returns from spring break in just under two weeks. The Lady Cardinals will take on Arkadelphia at home on Thursday. Opening pitch is set for 4 p.m.

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