Cheyenne Kirkpatrick’s career as a Kilgore High School Lady Bulldog began many years ago as a freshman in high school, and continues today as head coach of the softball program that she helped build.
Kirkpatrick – the former Cheyenne Savony – has lived and breathed softball her entire life. Her mom, Diana Schnarr, coached her; she and both of her sisters, Tara and Shelby, all played for the Lady Bulldogs.
Cheyenne played for Southern Arkansas University after KHS, and since arriving back on campus here, she’s trying to mold them back into a winner.
She hit a coaching milestone on Thursday, picking up career win number 100, a 13-0 win over Pine Tree’s junior varsity, as it turned out, as a part of a tournament in Elysian Fields.
The tournament continued on Friday, as Kilgore was set to face both Harleton and Elysian Fields, and will continue today: Kilgore takes on Overton at 12:10 p.m., and Ore City at 3:20.
In the game that eventually became win 100 on Thursday, Kilgore didn’t have the greatest start: three strikeouts to open the game.
But things turned around in the bottom of the inning when senior Kaitlyn Porter caught a pop-up and turned a double play to get the Lady Bulldogs out of the inning.
As it turned out, the second inning wouldn’t bring good things for Pine Tree: Kilgore would score seven runs in the top of the inning.
Aniyah Polk led off the inning with a single to center field, and then Kilynn Higginbotham reached on a bunt single, and went on to second on a throwing error that also allowed Polk to get to third. Jae’la Williams walked to load the bases.
After a strikeout, Camara Duncan-Morgan had a huge at-bat: a 2-RBI double that brought home both Polk and Higginbotham, and gave KHS a 2-0 lead.
Molly Quine walked, Williams scored on a passed ball, and then catcher Eva Ray smacked a 2-RBI triple, upping Kilgore’s advantage to 5-0.
The nightmare inning continued, at least a while longer, before Pine Tree could escape. Karsyn Stover drew a walk, and Ray, standing ready on second, came on home on another passed ball (6-0).
Porter hit an RBI double to score Stover, and give Kilgore a 7-0 lead before Pine Tree finally got the third out to end the top of the second.
Kilgore worked a quick 1-2-3 bottom of the second, as Stover got a strikeout, fielded an attempted bunt and threw that batter out, and then the third batter popped up and out to Polk.
On to the top of the third, and Kilgore would add six more runs.
Addison Pierson singled, and then Duncan-Morgan got another hit, this time a single. Quine singled to score Pierson (8-0), and Ray followed with a single that loaded the bases for Porter – who hit a 2-RBI double to give Kilgore a 10-0 lead.
Stover was hit by a pitch to reach, and both Ray and Porter, then Stover all came around to score on passed balls, leading to what would be the final score (13-0). The game went into a lightning delay, and officials elected to not resume.
Kilgore begins its District 15-4A schedule at Henderson on March 21.