After winning a third conference championship under the guidance of fifth-year head coach Jim Moore, the HHS softball team is going after a second straight district championship. Credit: DOUG DAVISON | HOUSTON HERALD

With a 12-run outburst in the bottom of the second inning, the Houston High School softball team beat Kingston 19-4 in a run-rule shortened 3-inning game in the first round of the 8-team Missouri State High School Activities Association Class 2 District 3 tournament last Saturday at Potosi.

The seventh-seeded Lady Cougars took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning without a hit, benefiting from 5 walks and an error in the frame.

But No. 2 Houston responded with 6 runs in the bottom of the first inning and then scored 12 in the second and 1 more in the third.

Junior Kelsey Pritchett had a career day at the plate in Houston’s district tournament opener.

The Lady Tigers totaled 14 hits in the contest. Junior Kelsey Pritchett had a huge day at the plate, going 4-for-4 with a home run, a triple and 2 doubles, driving in 6 runs and scoring 3 while amassing a whopping 11 total bases. Her 2-run homer in the second inning was a line shot to straightaway center field that left the yard in a hurry.

Sophomore Lacey Cavaness also had a big outing with the bat, going 3-for-3 with 2 doubles, 4 RBIs and a run scored, while senior Rhease Manier went 2-for-2 with a double, a walk, a run batted in and 2 runs scored. HHS senior catcher Katie Jo Chipps went 1-for-2 with a double and 2 walks, scoring 3 times and stealing 3 bases.

Pritchett started in the pitcher’s circle and worked a third of an inning, issuing 4 walks. Senior Aliyah Walker then came in and tossed 2 2/3 innings, not allowing a hit but walking 6 and striking out 3.

The Lady Tigers were without the services of senior center fielder Karlee Curtis, who broke an ankle sliding into second base during a practice last week.

In other first round results, top-seeded Potosi beat No. 8 Grandview 15-2, third-seeded Steelville topped No. 6 Bourbon 7-1 and No. 4 Salem routed No. 5 Licking 11-1.

Houston (15-3) was scheduled to face No. 3 Steelville in a semifinal game on Monday of this week, but rain postponed the contest until 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. The district championship contest was subsequently moved from Tuesday to Wednesday.

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