Clarkdale falls in 2A battle
By By Jeff Byrd/The Meridian Star
Oct. 28, 2001
JACKSON Using the momentum from a game-winning single that staved off elimination, the Hatley Lady Tigers stormed back to claim the Class 2A Girls Slow-pitch Softball Championship here Saturday at the V.A. Fields.
Hatley, who finishes at 29-14, overcame a one-game deficit in the best of three series with Clarkdale by playing sharper defense and getting timely hits.
In the championship final, the Lady Tigers used a pair of big innings a six-run third and a five-run sixth to beat Clarkdale 12-4.
It was an agonizing loss for the Lady Bulldogs who had won seven straight post-season games including the opener on Saturday by an 18-9 score. Clarkdale closed out the season with a 24-12 record.
Clarkdale was held to just eight hits in the final. A key defensive adjustment by Hatley was a shift against Lady Bulldog clean-up batter Ashley Satcher.
Hatley shortstop Tammy Parish moved out to the edge of the outfield grass when Satcher came up. The result was three fly outs.
We felt we needed to take their big girl out of the line-up," said Hatley Head Coach Mike Hathcock.
Hatley took control with a six-run third inning to go up 7-0. The Lady Tigers got five hits and took advantage of two errors.
Clarkdale didn't get on the board until the fifth with a four-run rally that closed the gap to 7-4. Pinch-hitter Lindsey Dawkins knocked in the first run.
Brandi Limerick, Dawkins and JorD'an Orr also scored in the inning.
Hatley answered with five runs in the sixth inning. The big blow was a three-run double by Jessica Taylor with two out. That made it 12-4.
Pitcher Kim Wardlaw set Clarkdale down in order in the seventh.
She caught a line-out by Megan Potate to end the game.
Pearson went 4-for-4 and scored twice to lead Hatley. Taylor drove in four while Lori Vaughn had three hits and two runs scored. Parish drove in two and scored twice.
Savanah Satcher had two hits to pace Clarkdale.
Sara Beth Lewis' game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh prevented Clarkdale from rallying to complete a sweep,
Clarkdale came back from a 5-3 deficit with two runs in the top of the seventh. JorD'an Orr keyed the charge with a one-out triple.
She later scored on an error off the bat of Dawkins.
Potate, who reached on a fielder's choice that retired Dawkins, then scored on a two-out hit by Emily Howard. That tied it at 5-5.
In the bottom of the seventh, Meredith McCormick reached on a one-out single. She then took third when the ball got by the Clarkdale left-fielder.
Roberson had no choice but to load the bases. Lewis then responded with a hit past the bag at third base.
Hatley jumped out to a 3-0 lead but Clarkdale scored three in the third to tie it. Kaylea Thrash, Ashley Satcher and Brandi Wright had RBI hits in the inning.
Hatley went back in front at 5-3 with two runs in the bottom half of the third. A dropped rundown throw allowed Pearson to score the go ahead run.
Kelby Carter followed with a hit to score Lewis.
Orr led Clarkdale, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Ashley Satcher had three hits while Howard had two.
Hatley had 11 hits in game two. Four players had two hits apiece.
Clarkdale took advantage of eight errors by Hatley along with 18 hits to pound the Lady Tigers 18-9 in game one.
The Lady Bulldogs erased a 4-2 deficit with a 10-run fourth inning. Fourteen batters reached with nine getting hits along with four errors. Sabrina Woodall had two hits in the at-bat, with the second safety knocking in two runs for a 12-4 lead.
Hatley got a three-run homer from Jana Pearson to close the gap to 12-7.
Clarkdale answered with six runs in the fifth. Woodall had the big blow with a three-run triple.
JorD'an Orr also had a triple in the inning.
Woodall finished with five RBIs off three hits. Orr went 3-for-5 with three runs and a RBI. Savanah Satcher, Ashley Satcher and Brandi Limerick each had two hits.
Pearson had three hits and two runs to lead Hatley.
Jeff Byrd is a sports writer for the Meridian Star. He can be reached at 693-1551 or by e-mail at email@example.com.