State-ranked NL hands Lady Cats first district loss
By JOSEPH ELERSON | News-Telegram Sports Writer
Mar. 21, 2007 - PARIS - The Sulphur Springs Lady Cats found out first-hand how tough the district race will be this season during a 3-0 loss to the No. 14-ranked North Lamar Lady Panthers Tuesday night.
"Just like I told them after the game, they made plays tonight and we didn't. We were able to do that on Friday (against Texas High) and tonight we weren't," said SSHS coach David Carrillo.
"I told them that it is disappointing, and in the district race that we have right now we don't have time to sit around and cry about it. We have got to move on and I challenged them that we have got to get after it."
The Lady Cats (12-10, 1-1 in District 11-4A) will face another tough test on Friday night when they travel to Mount Pleasant to face the Lady Tigers. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.
"We are going to see another good pitcher in Laura Rawlings, and I am not sure what happened last year to them," the coach said. "Again, hopefully we will come out and continue to work and stay focused with the task at hand - which is winning as many games as we can in district."
SSHS fell behind in the bottom of the first inning as North Lamar's Erin McGregor led off with a single to left field. After two straight strikeouts from Marci Womack, Chelsea Stedham smacked a double to the right field wall to score McGregor from first for the 1-0 lead.
Womack pitched a complete game five-hitter for the Lady Cats with one walk and 10 strikeouts. She only had one earned run in the game.
"Marci did an awesome job tonight," Carrillo said. "We weren't able to come through offensively for her and then we got that error. You are not going to play perfect all of the time and by no means did that error cost us the game tonight."
The error happened in the third inning as North Lamar sent six batters to the plate against Womack. With one out, Kara Crawford smacked a double, followed by a walk to Stedham, Kaci Crawford hit into a fielder's choice as Brittani Crawford tagged out Kara Crawford for the second out.
Jerrica McKnight then hit a ball back to Womack - who bobbled the ball and then threw wide of first baseman Katie Dodd as Stedham and courtesy runner Kassidy Moree scored for the 3-0 lead.
"I think Marci got in a hurry and rushed her throw a little bit," the coach said. "I am just as guilty because I should have told her to hold the ball. It seemed like everybody got quite at that time, and that is what I was telling the team afterwards."
SSHS had only two base runners the entire game as Lady Panthers starter Kaci Crawford gave up a single to Brittani Crawford in the third inning and to Amanda McGowin in the seventh. The Lady Cats struck out 10 times in the game.
"I know that we are a better team than what we showed tonight," Carrillo said. "In this district whoever is going to make the plays is going to win the game. We just didn't hit the ball very well, and defensively I thought we played well enough to win."