DENHAM SPRINGS —Central’s River Hubbard wasn’t about to let her own two-game highlight reel overshadow the reason for the surging Wildcats’ success.
“I’m just doing it for my team,” Hubbard said. “They do it for me. I’ve kind of been in a slump and have come back. They’ve picked me up.”
Central’s enjoyed a recent show of power at the plate, but it was Hubbard who singled twice and drove in four runs to help the Wildcats to a 6-1 District 4-5A victory Wednesday over Denham Springs.
“She’s a senior that’s been in program a long time,” Central coach Michelle Efferson said of Hubbard. “She doesn’t want it to ever end.”
Central (15-2, 2-1 in 4-5A) extended its win streak to six games with Hubbard playing a pivotal role in her team’s past two games.
Hubbard capped a dramatic four-run comeback in Tuesday’s 8-7 victory over Parkview Baptist, drilling a bases-loaded double in the bottom of the seventh.
Central didn’t extend an impressive stretch of 22 home runs in its past 11 games, instead relying on six singles and a pair of doubles in support of winning pitcher Emily Danehower.
“They get frustrated when they’re not hitting the long ball,” Efferson said. “We keep telling them to have fun out there.”
Hubbard, who bats eighth in Central’s lineup, dropped a two-run single into shallow center field for a 2-0 lead in the second inning.
Denham Springs (6-8, 1-3) staged its biggest threat in the bottom half of the inning, loading the bases against Danehower on consecutive singles from Sarah Cambre and Jolie Smith and a two-out walk by Karleigh Villneuve.
Danehower responded by getting lead-off batter Rayne Minor to foul out to third baseman Heidi Zumo on the first pitch.
Danehower (8-1) scattered 10 hits, walked two and struck out seven. She lost her shutout bid on Karleigh Galloway’s RBI single in the seventh.
Smith led the Yellow Jackets with a 3-for-3 performance. Jaden Accardo, Bailey Hughes and Galloway all collecting two hits.
“We graduated 98 percent of our offense,” said Denham Springs coach David Bourque, whose team dropped its third straight game. “We’ve got to have better at-bats and play better defensively to help our pitchers.”
Heather Zumo drove in Raegan Willis on a double that fell just in front of a hard-charging Smith in left field and Hubbard capped the three-run fourth inning, drilling a full-count single down the left field line for a 5-0 advantage.
Willis’ groundout scored Baylee Johnson, who led off the fifth with a double.
Denham Springs’ starter Balea Fucich took the loss, allowing 10 hits, a walk and two strikeouts over five innings.
“I’ve changed my mindset at the plate,” Hubbard said. “I usually went in swinging at whatever looked good. I’ve been listening to my coaches,and it’s working for me.”