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Fording, Robinson power Rangers past Wildcats

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Junior Mikaela Fording and senior Alyssa Robinson delivered the big hits in North’s 7-4 win at Mayfield on Monday.

The dynamic duo combined for seven hits, including four doubles, and knocked in six of the Rangers’ seven runs.

“It was huge for Alyssa Robinson and Mikaela Fording to go 7-for-8 with four doubles and six of our seven RBI,” said North coach Andrew Palermo. “Their bats stayed hot and helped pick up the slack for their team. Hopefully this is a springboard for the rest of the week. Fording has been huge for us all year and if A-Rob can get hot, that’s huge for the middle of the lineup.”

With the win, the Rangers improved to 10-12 overall and 5-7 in the Western Reserve Conference. Mayfield dropped to 6-11, 6-7.

Trailing 1-0 in the top of the third, Robinson got the Rangers started with a leadoff single and scored on the first of Fording’s three straight doubles. Kristen Peace then singled and Fording scored on Val Arnold’s sacrifice fly to put the Rangers on top, 2-1.

Fording finished 3-for-4 with the three doubles and four runs batted in.

“I’m always very confident up at the plate,” she said. “I just go up there with an empty head and trust my mechanics. Winning today meant a lot. It’s a good start to a big week we have ahead of us. I am very confident in my team and I know we’re going to do great things this week.”

North made it 5-1 in the fourth when Ely Miller singled and moved to second on Hannah Harris’ walk. Alyssa Moses laid down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners to second and third and Robinson delivered an RBI single that scored Miller.

Fording then doubled home Harris and Robinson.

Mayfield got two back in the bottom of the inning but the Rangers went up 7-3 in the sixth.

Harris led off the inning with a single and scored on Robinson’s double.

Robinson, who scored on Fording’s third two-bagger of the day, finished the game 4-for-4 with three runs scored and two RBI.

“Last week when we played them I didn’t do so well hitting,” Robinson said. “I wanted to come in and play my game. When I come in calm and focused, I play the best ball I can.”

A leadoff double helped the Wildcats score a run in the bottom of the seventh but Lexie Genter pitched out of the inning to collect the win.

She allowed two earned runs on 10 hits and struck out three in the complete game victory.

“Lexie was in command most of the game,” Palermo said. “83 of her 125 pitches were strikes and she did a good job keeping hitters off balance and not giving up the big hit.”

North hosts Shaw in a Division I sectional semifinal on Tuesday. The winner plays at Chardon on Wednesday.

Click here to read the rest of this game story.

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