LFO to host Cal­houn for 6-AAA ti­tle

Walker County Messenger - - Sports - By Scott Herpst

The LFO Lady War­riors be­gan the week just two wins away from a re­gion cham­pi­onship.

LFO ended the sea­son for Har­al­son County in the open­ing round of the Re­gion 6-AAA tour­na­ment last Tuesday and they ad­vanced to the re­gion fi­nals with a dou­ble­header sweep of Bre­men this past Satur­day.

LFO (20-10) is sched­uled to host sec­ond-ranked Cal­houn in the best-of-three cham­pi­onship se­ries, which will be­gin with a dou­ble­header on Wednesday. Game 3, if needed, would be played on Thurs­day.

LFO 5, Har­al­son Co. 0

A heads-up de­fen­sive play by short­stop Tay­lor Phillips in the bot­tom of the fifth helped pre­serve the shutout in the se­ries opener.

Lead­ing just 1-0, LFO watched as the Lady Rebels put the po­ten­tial ty­ing run on first base be­fore lay­ing down a sac­ri­fice bunt to move the run­ner to sec­ond. LFO third base­man Kar­son Brad­ford charged the bunt and fired to sec­ond base­man Keelie Mauk, who was cov­er­ing the bag at first for the out.

Har­al­son County run­ner Gra­cie McEl­roy, see­ing that third base had been left un­oc­cu­pied, at­tempted to take the ex­tra base at the end of the play. But Phillips sprinted af­ter McEl­roy and made a run­ning catch of a throw by Mauk a few feet in front of the base. She twisted her body, lunged and ap­plied the tag on a slid­ing McEl­roy just inches be­fore the run­ner’s foot touched the bag to com­plete the high­light-worthy 5-4-6 dou­ble play.

The scor­ing chance by the Lady Rebels in that in­ning was one of the few chances they had in the en­tire dou­ble­header as se­nior Kourt­ney Mor­ri­son was sim­ply master­ful in the cir­cle. She al­lowed just three hits and two walks in Game 1 with seven strike­outs.

Mor­ri­son staked her team to a 2-0 lead in the first in­ning of Game 1 with a two-run dou­ble and Brad­ford picked up an RBI-sin­gle in the third. Brad­ford struck again in the fifth, this time with a tworun dou­ble to cap the scor­ing.

LFO 3, Har­al­son Co. 0

With LFO play­ing as the vis­it­ing team, Mor­ri­son sin­gled in Phillips to give the Lady War­riors a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Lyn­d­sey Teague’s sac­ri­fice fly in the sixth plated Phillips, who dou­bled to lead off the in­ning, and a shal­low, bloop sin­gle to cen­ter by Shaniyah Jones in the sev­enth brought in pinch run­ner Tay­lor Bono with an in­surance run.

Jones went 2-for-2 in Game 2.

Mor­ri­son scat­tered five hits in the night­cap, while one against fan­ning seven bat­ters.

LFO 1, Bre­men 0

Both teams had plenty of chances to score in Satur­day’s opener, but noth­ing looked more like a sure thing than the Lady Devils’ chance in the top of the sev­enth.

Bre­men loaded the bases against Mor­ri­son with two outs be­fore Kris­ten Green sent

a fly ball to­ward the right­field line that looked des­tined to drop for at least a run-scor­ing hit.

How­ever, LFO’s speedy right­fielder Jer­ri­ane Jack­son was on her horse as she sprinted to­ward the foul line and dove fully ex­tended to catch the ball at the last pos­si­ble mo­ment, end­ing the in­ning and pre­serv­ing the score­less tie.

Then in the bot­tom of the sev­enth, Phillips drew a one-out walk to bring up Mor­ri­son in the clean-up spot

of the or­der and the se­nior ri­fled a dou­ble to cen­ter­field that car­omed off the top of the fence and al­lowed Phillips to score all the way from first with the game-win­ner.

Mor­ri­son got the win, al­low­ing five hits and three walks with three strike­outs. She also had three of the Lady War­riors’ eight hits. Teague had two hits, while Phillips, Jones and Mauk added one each.

LFO 5, Bre­men 4

In Game 2, LFO - play­ing one again as the vis­it­ing team - scored three times in the top of the sec­ond to grab a 4-1 lead. They scored once

more in the top of the sev­enth to make it a 5-2 game and were able to hold on af­ter Bre­men plated two runs in the bot­tom of the sev­enth.

Phillips was 2-for-3 with a triple and three RBIs. Mor­ri­son and Mauk each had two hits and an RBI, while Jones and Ha­ley Stahl joined Mor­ri­son and Mauk with dou­bles.

Mor­ri­son al­lowed four earned runs on eight hits with two walks and five strike­outs.

With the se­ries win, LFO has al­ready as­sured it­self of play­ing at least the first round of the Class AAA state play­offs at home when the tour­na­ment starts on Oct. 11.

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