After an explosive start at the plate, the American Christian Academy softball held Northridge at arm’s length for the remainder of the game en route to a 12-3 victory Friday afternoon.

“It’s a solid win against a quality opponent,” ACA coach Billy White said. “We always just try to get better each game.”

The Patriots (16-3) seized control early, scoring three runs in the first inning and following with five combined runs in the second and third inning to hold an 8-3 lead.

After the blistering opening, the bats for both sides cooled off until the final innings as ACA scored four more to pad the lead.

Despite the victory, White felt his team could have done a better job of staying engaged and focused on offense for the full seven innings.

“We just have to stay focused for seven innings. That is the goal. We’ve got to compete for an entire game, not just a few innings at a time,” White said. “We lost focus midway through, but it's softball so you’ve got to play seven.”

Several Patriots had impressive performances at the plate. It was an especially productive afternoon for senior Hanna Sartain, who had four hits and reached base on an error. She had two triples and drove in four runs. Halie Payne added a pair of hits and three RBIs, including a two-run homer in the seventh inning to put an exclamation mark on the victory.

Lindy Cheshire had two hits and an RBI for Northridge (2-13). Mary Wilson also drove in a run.

ACA will play at Brookwood on Monday before hosting Tuscaloosa County Tuesday. Northridge will travel to Sipsey Valley on Monday.