I'm just tickled pink we got to play."South Effingham coach Chuck Smith
GUYTON -- The sun wasn’t the only thing that glimmered during South Effingham’s season-opening softball game Tuesday. Despite having their preparation time severely reduced by relentless afternoon storms in recent days, the Mustangs galloped to an easy 8-0 victory against Screven County. “Practice has just been so limited,” South Effingham coach Chuck Smith said. “Some of the cuts we took weren’t good but that’s going to come. I’m not worried about it.” The Mustangs cooled considerably offensively after plating seven runs in the opening frame of the five-inning contest. Hailey Pinette led South Effingham with three hits. Alex Brown and Cheyenne Miller added two hits each. Pitcher Kastin Belogorska didn’t appear the least bit rusty despite the recent rain. She logged nine strikeouts, including seven straight to cap her outing, before giving way to ReAnn McCloy after four innings. “I’ll take that because we haven’t had much of chance to work on pitching, either,” Smith said. When the Lady Gamecocks managed to put the ball in play -- they got only two hits -- the Mustangs' gloves were sturdy. “It was a great job defensively,” Smith said. “We made the plays we needed to do and did what we needed to do. I’m just tickled pink we got to play.” Smith's plans to put his team through defensive drills Monday were cut short by precipitation. “That was really my first time trying to do defense with my varsity," he said. "I’ve yet to do anything with the junior varsity and they have a game Saturday. Every time we turn around, it rains. “That’s just the way it is at the beginning (of the season).” Smith has the luxury of having seven seniors on his roster who have endured adversity before. “I’m glad I have a veteran team,” he said. “They pretty much know what they are doing and they handle a lot of things, They make it so much fun to coach. “Their leadership is phenomenal.” The Mustangs will return to action Thursday at 6 p.m. for a home game against Richmond Hill.