Carson Kruse home run trot

Carson Kruse rounds second base after hitting a three-run home run that clinched a 14-3 run-rule shortened Lady Titans victory.

FORT BRANCH — The Gibson Southern Lady Titans gave the Henderson County (Ky.) a rude welcome to the Hoosier State on Monday as they run-ruled the Lady Colonels 14-3 in five innings on a night that saw them smash three home runs.

The Lady Titans wasted no time building a big lead as they plated five runs in the bottom of the first.

Senior Emilee Edwards got the party started with a solo home run to give the Lady Titans a 1-0 lead.

Later in the inning, with two outs and the bases empty, Gibson Southern began to rally.

Hannah Long drew a walk, stole second and came home to score on an Olivia Money RBI single to push the lead to 2-0.

The next batter, Lauren Elpers, crushed a two-run home run off the rough of the left field shed to make it a 4-0 game.

The big inning wouldn’t end there as starting pitcher Olivia Stunkel reached on an error and her courtesy runner Ryann Smith came home to score on a Sydney Long single as the Lady Titans took a quick 5-0 lead.

In the bottom of the second, the Lady Titans added two more to their lead as Stunkel helped herself out with a two-run single to plate Hannah Long and Money and give her team a 7-0 lead.

The Lady Colonels got two runs back in the top of the third as Stunkel allowed her first two earned runs of the season. Anna Willet hit an RBI single and Kaytlan Kemp scored on a wild pitch as Henderson County cut the lead to 7-2.

Gibson Southern would get those runs back and more in the bottom half of the inning as Sydney Long hit an RBI single, Hannah Long drew a bases-loaded walk and an error by Henderson County second basemen Haleigh Beck allowed two more Lady Titan runs to score, pushing the lead to 11-2.

The Lady Colonels added a run in the top of the fourth to cut the lead to 11-3 and Madi Stone tossed a scoreless inning in the bottom half of the frame.

After Stunkel retired Henderson County in order in the top of the fifth, the Lady Titan came to the plate looking for three runs to allow the run-rule to take effect.

That’s exactly what they were able to find as Elpers and Stunkel singled, setting up senior Carson Kruse, who slugged a walk-off three-run home run on a line drive to right-center giving Gibson Southern their third straight win.

Stunkel earned the win for the Lady Titans as she tossed a five-inning complete game that saw her strike out seven, walk one and allow three earned runs on six hits.

Kelsie Hill took the loss for Henderson County as she pitched 2.1 innings that saw her strike out three, allow eight hits, six walks and 11 runs with seven earned.

Stone tossed two innings of relief that saw her allow five hits and three runs without a strikeout or walk.

The Lady Titans are now 8-4 on the season and are a perfect 5-0 playing at home in Fort Branch.

They’ll host Pocket Athletic Conference foe Southridge Tuesday before hosting another conference rival Thursday when South Spencer comes to town.

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