Lady Cats back into third with one-run win

By JOSEPH ELERSON | News-Telegram Sports Writer

April 14, 2007 - LINDALE - Playing in less than ideal weather conditions on Friday, the Sulphur Springs Lady Cats scored all of their runs in the first inning of a 3-2 win over the Lindale Lady Eagles.

"I felt really good going into this game. I knew that we were going to make a better showing than we did last time and we came out and played hard," said SSHS coach David Carrillo. "I told the girls before the game started that this was a playoff game. We are in a situation where we have got to win out, and we could either be having a playoff game with Paris that means something or we could be playing for pride."

With the win, Sulphur Springs (16-13) is now tied with Lindale at 5-4 in District 11-4A heading into the final game of the regular season next Friday night against Paris at Lady Cat Park.

"From what I know right now, If we win and Lindale wins against T-High we will have a playoff for a playoff spot," the coach said. "If we win and Lindale loses, we are in, and if Lindale wins and we lose, Lindale is in. That is the scenario right now and like I told the girls we have to keep winning and see what happens. "

In the top of the first inning, Lady Cat freshman Mac Morgan reached base with a single to left field with one out. On a called strike three to Amanda McGowin, Morgan stole second, advanced to third when the catcher's throw went into center field, then scored as the center fielder's throw sailed into the dugout for the 1-0 lead.

Carrillo said Morgan was very aggressive on that play and if paid off early in the game.

"Mac has been an awesome player and she is a very heads up player," he said. "She is very aggressive and some times I have to tone her down because she is so aggressive. I like that in her as a player and she just got after it and we were going to pull out all of the stops to pull out this victory."

The Lady Cats then rattled off three straight hits against starter Brooke Martin - who was pulled after only six batters and 2/3 of an inning giving up three runs, all earned, on four hits with two strikeouts and no walks.

With two outs, Katie Dodd ripped a single to left field, stole second and scored on a double to left field by Maurie Lewis. Jenna Davis smoked another double to left field, scoring Lewis for the 3-0 lead. Dodd, Lewis and Davis went a combined 4-for-8 with two runs scored and two RBI in the middle of the lineup. Dodd finished 2-for-3 with a stolen base and a run scored.

"I think our girls wanted to be more disciplined at the plate and lay off of that rise ball and we were able to do that," Carrillo said. "We knew that she (Martin) was going to change the pace a little bit and she tried to get us to sucker in on those rise balls. We were able to be disciplined and get the hits and put them together."

In the bottom of the first, Lindale's (24-5) Kylie Packard opened up the inning with a triple to right field off Marci Womack and then Ashton Brey reached on a walk to put runners on first and third with no outs. Brey then stole second and both runners scored on an error by Lewis to make the score 3-2 after the first inning.

Womack ended the night with a complete game four-hitter while giving up two runs, three walks and 11 strikeouts for the Lady Cats.

After scoring three runs off Martin in the first inning, the Lady Cats could not figure out reliever Morgan Bond over the final 6 1/3 innings as Bond gave up three hits, one walk and six strikeouts the remainder of the game.

In the fourth inning, the Lady Cats had the bases loaded with two outs but left all three runners stranded as Morgan hit into a fielder's choice as Crawford was tagged out heading to third base.

"We want to have awareness on the field and I felt like we had a mental lapse right there," the coach said. "I am not saying that that girl would have scored but we have to be able to make those plays consistently to have an opportunity to score."

Notes: The Lady Cats will not play on Tuesday due to TAKS testing and will wrap up the regular season against Paris Friday night. ... The game will be Senior Night and the team will honor Kristen McDonald, Tarra Morton and Jordan Anderson at 5:50 p.m. ... Four teams are battling for three playoff spots heading into the final game of the season. ... Mount Pleasant defeated Texas High 10-0 Friday night to lead the district at 7-2. ... North Lamar played Paris on Friday night but no score was available by press time. .... North Lamar is in second at 6-2, while SSHS and Lindale are 5-4.

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