By Myra Bean
The No. 1 and No. 2 softball matchup between South Panola and Horn Lake did not materialize Tuesday due to scheduling changes.
But, the matchup will take place tomorrow in the first round of the divisional playoffs. South Panola (22-3) is seeded No. 2 in Division 2 and Horn Lake (19-2) won Division 1.
South Panola suffered its third loss of the season to Clinton on Thursday, 7-2. Stormy Robison took the loss for the Lady Tigers as Lady Tiger head coach Ashleigh Hicks held pitcher Whitney Kiihnl out in preparation for the big game.
The Lady Tigers will have to have all their ducks in a row to handle Horn Lake one more time. The Lady Tigers downed the Lady Eagles 1-0 on March 20 in eight innings.
Monday, the Lady Tigers defeated Division 1 runner up Southaven 2-0 in non-conference action.
Kiihnl got the win pitching the complete game in seven innings, striking out 19 batters and walking two.
The Lady Tigers had eight hits. Kiihnl and Ellen Farrish were 2-for-4 each. Haylei Plummer was 2-for-3 with a double. Hillari Plummer and Jennifer Newcomb each had a hit.
With the two Starkville shutouts, the Lady Tigers had shut out eight consecutive opponents.
In the first game, South Panola won 10-0 and 13-0 in game two.
In game one, Whitney was the starting pitcher and got the win in three innings. Kenzie Reed pitched the last two. Kiihnl struck out nine and Reed five.
In the first inning, sisters Hillari and Haylei Plummer landed a one-two punch for the Lady Tigers. Hillari laid down a bunt to get on base. Then, Haylei hit a triple to center field to drive little sis home. Haylei scored on a double RBI by Casi Brooks.
The Lady Tigers had seven hits in the game and six walks.
Haley Hood was 1-for-3 in the first game but got on base twice on an error and fielder’s choice. She finished off the evening with a two-run inside the park homerun in the second game.
In the second game, Robison got the win after pitching three innings in relief of Kiihnl. Robison struck out seven batters, Kiihnl six.
Robison also hit a double. The lady Tigers had nine hits and 11 walks.
Game time for Saturday had not been set as of press time. Hicks tentatively said 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. games. The teams play a best-of-three series. If they split Saturday, they will play at South Panola on Tuesday.
The winners will advance to the Round 2 beginning Thursday, April 17.
Other first round game include Southaven (14-6) at Tupelo (19-3) in Division 1 and 2 play.
In Division 3 and 4 action, Madison Central will host Warren Central and Clinton will host Northwest Rankin.
In South Division 5 and 6, Meridian will host the first round, but the Division 6 runner up has not been determined. Oak Grove is No. 2 in Division 5 but the division 6 winner who will host the first round has not earned the spot.
The Division 7 winner will host Harrison Central, Division 8 runner up. Division 8 winner Petal will host Division 7 runner up, George County.