Darlings' state final will be all Hopkins County; local Angels team leading in suspended game

By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY | News-Telegram Sports Editor

July 11, 2007 - At least one Hopkins County team will be heading to the Dixie Softball World Series - which team it will be is still to be determined.

Hopkins County American defeated Crosby 9-0 in the semifinal game of the Darlings State Tournament at Coleman Park Tuesday, the only game that was completed before a thunderstorm postponed the final games until this evening.

Hopkins County American, coached by Rowdy Crowson, will now face Hopkins County National, coached by Jill Dietze, in the Darlings championship game at 6 p.m. today. The winner will advance to the Dixie World Series in North Carolina.

In the Angels division, Hopkins County was leading Dayton 3-2 in the third inning when the game was called. It will resume at 6 p.m. today, with the winner facing Fannin County immediately afterward for the state title.

Darlings

HC American 9, Crosby 0

A rematch of Monday's high-scoring, extra-inning victory by Crosby turned out to be all Hopkins County.

The local team scored six runs in the bottom of the first inning and added three more in the third. Meanwhile, the American defense allowed more than one Crosby baserunner in only one inning.

In the first inning, Hopkins County scored most of its runs with two outs. Taylor Broyles and Ragan Sachs both hit safely with one out, and Molly Johnston drove home one run with a single. After Story Thompson reached on a fielder's choice, Jaye Doughtie, Myesha Buford and Sierra Nickerson all had RBI hits. Kylie Cooper then smacked a two-run single for a 6-0 lead.

In the third, Broyles, who had two hits and scored twice, led off the inning with a single, and then two outs later, Thompson and Doughtie had back-to-back singles before Buford drove them both home with a single of her own.

That was more than enough offense because of the way the Americans played defense. Nickerson caught a foul pop at catcher in the first inning, second baseman Johnston fielded a ball and alertly tagged a runner out in the second, Thompson started a double play at pitcher in the third inning after catching a pop-up, and Broyles made a diving stop of a grounder in the fifth and forced a runner heading to third base.

By JOSEPH ELERSON | News-Telegram Sports Writer

With all of the rain that Hopkins County has had during the past week, the championship round of the Dixie Angels state tournament was postponed due to rain in the top of the third inning Tuesday at Coleman Park.

Hopkins County American held a 3-2 lead in the third inning with two outs as Dayton was up to bat. The game will resume at 6 p.m. at Coleman Park with Dayton's Dixie Rice at the plate with a 2-2 count and nobody on base.

The winner of the game will face Fannin County at 8 p.m. as the winner will advance to the Dixie World Series in Denison.

In the top of the first inning, Dayton took an early 2-0 lead as Hopkins County starter Kasey Moore gave up back-to-back walks to Shelby Robbins and Rice. After a groundout to first, Alicia Davis loaded the bases with a walk and then Moore hit Alexis Kimball for the first run of the game. Rice later scored on a bases-loaded walk to Vanessa Flores.

In the bottom of the inning, Hopkins County American cut into the deficit with an RBI double by Moore as Desiray Debase scored from first for the 2-1 deficit.

With rain on the horizon, Hopkins County scored two runs in the bottom of the second inning as Kennedy Potts reached with a single and then Kendall Wallace belted a stand-up triple to tie the game at 2-2. Wallace then scored on a groundout by Brandie McLane for the 3-2 lead.

Moore and Sarah Womack have combined for a no-hitter with four walks and five strikeouts for Hopkins County American.

Hopkins County won the first-round matchup against Dayton 4-0.

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