SP Lady Tigers

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lady Tigers’ season comes to an end at hand of Madison Central

By Angie Ledbetter

The South Panola Lady Tiger’s dreams of a state championship title were snuffed out as they fell to Madison Central in the first round of playoffs.

The Lady Tigers ended their season 13-12 overall, 6-0 division record.

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In game one, Madison Central defeated the Lady Tigers 10-2 at Liberty Park in Ridgeland on Thursday and lost 12-5 Friday night at South Panola.

The Lady Tigers recorded two hits, three errors and left two on base while Madison Central logged 12 hits, two errors and left seven on base.

Scoring the first run for the Lady Tigers in game one was center fielder Christa Brown who drew a walk and later scored in the top of the first. Second baseman Chelsea Allen doubled in the top of the sixth scoring South Panola’s only other run.

Madison Central’s scoring came by way of four over the wall home runs by left fielder Brittney McBrain with two, pitcher Kelly Young and third baseman Mari Ashton Lovelace. The Lady Jaguars also recorded four doubles, one single and one walk.

In game two, Madison Central jumped on top 3-0 and then added two more runs in top of the second to give them a 5-0 lead.

The Lady Tigers got some momentum going in bottom of the third when designated player Lindsey Calvert singled to center and Marla Rudd took over as courtesy runner.

Right fielder Madison Taylor slapped a double to right on a full count driving home Rudd for the first score for the Lady Tigers.

Brown doubled to right driving home Taylor for a second run. Allen hit an RBI double to score Brown before left fielder Meredith Roberson doubled to left to driving home Allen. Catcher Amanda Ivy hit an RBI triple scoring Roberson. Ivy was put out between third and home in a run down while Madison Central maintained the lead, 5-4.

In top of the fifth, the Lady Jaguars added another run as catcher Courtney Purvis singled to center and later scored for the 6-4 lead. In the top of the sixth Madison Central scored three runs for the a 9-4 lead. Right fielder Katie Anne Bailey and third baseman Lovelace hit solo home runs.

Madison Central put three more runs on the scoreboard in the top of the seventh for a 12-4 lead.

Not giving up in bottom of the frame, the Lady Tigers added one last run when Allen bunted down the third base line and reached first on an error. With Head Coach Ashleigh Hicks giving her the steal signal, Allen made her way to third and later crossed home when Ivy laid down a sacrifice bunt.

The Lady Tigers ended the series with seven runs, 14 hits, eight errors and left nine on base.

The Lady Jaguars recorded 22 runs, 23 hits, five home runs, seven errors and left 14 on base.

Hicks told her team after the game how proud she was of them.

“I am proud of you for winning our district. Coming out here I think we should’ve given them a much better game. Even after we got beat on Thursday, I think it still should have gone to three games. I thought for a moment that you were going to do that.”

Hicks acknowledged the three seniors on the team, Paige Jordan, Meredith Roberson and Chelsea Allen.

“You just wished off three seniors and we’re going to miss them,” she said. “All three of them brought something different to the team that we’re going to miss. We wish them well and thank them for all they’re done for us.”

Recapping the season, Hicks thought defense would have been the strongest point at the beginning of the season but through the season they did not come through as much as she would have liked.

“Our speed was the key factor a lot this year,” she said. “In the middle of the season and toward the end, we got very aggressive base running. Our pitching did very well for us also as young as they are.

“They’ll come back stronger next year and better each year,” Hicks continued. “We’re going to have them for many years to come along with a lot more of our defense.”