Messenger file photo by Chris McCarthy
By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor
Glencoe swept its way to the Class 3A, Area 11 Tournament softball title last week at Hokes Bluff.
The Lady Yellow Jackets opened with an 11-2 victory over Ohatchee and a 7-4 win over Hokes Bluff on May 1 and a 15-9 triumph over Hokes Bluff in the championship game on May 2.
The Lady Eagles defeated Ohatchee, 12-5, in the playback bracket to reach the title game.
The Lady Yellow Jackets built a 14-1 lead after three innings, but Hokes Bluff outscored Glencoe 8 to 1 the rest of the way to make it interesting.
The Lady Jackets took the lead for good after Hailey Hanners’ grand slam in the bottom of the first. An RBI single from Summer Crump and a two-run base hit from Hanners made it 7-0 after two innings.
Kayla Traylor’s solo home run in the top of the third pulled the Lady Eagles within one, but Glencoe brought the house in the bottom of the inning.
Jaxson Sizemore doubled home Sadie Waldrop, Sizemore scored on an error, Emma Croy doubled in Crump and Croy scored off Cayse Willet’s sacrifice fly to make it 11-2. Three batters later, Jordyn Morris (pictured above) belted a three-run dinger that put Hokes Bluff in a 13-run hole.
The Lady Eagles weren’t folding their tents at that point, however.
In the top of the fourth, Abby Payne singled in Mary Davenport and Hayden Wolfe and Makenna Bennich drove in Payne to bring Hokes Bluff within 14-5. The next inning, Traylor’s two-run double, Garrett’s two-run triple and Payne’s two-run single cut the deficit to five runs.
But that was as close as Hokes Bluff would get. The Lady Eagles loaded the bases in the six and seventh innings, but Crump escaped damage both times to earn the win on the mound.
For Glencoe at the plate, Hanners went 4-for-4 with five RBI and two runs scored; Croy went 2-for-3 with an RBI and three runs scored; Morris had a hit, three RBI and a run scored; Crump had a hit, an RBI and three runs scored; Maxwell went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored and Sizemore had a hit, an RBI and a run scored.
For Hokes Bluff, Traylor went 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs scored; Payne went 2-for-3 with three RBI and a run scored; Garrett went 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored; Bennich went 2-for-4 with two RBI; Wolfe went 2-for-5 with two runs scored and Ryan Lumpkin went 2-for-5.
Both Glencoe and Hokes Bluff advanced to the East Regional Tournament next week at Sand Mountain Park in Albertville. Glencoe (21-19) faces Sylvania in the opening round, while Hokes Bluff (21-23-1) plays Plainview.