Pleasant Home, Florala advance in tourneyPublished 8:25pm Friday, May 10, 2013
GULF SHORES — Pleasant Home overcame a five-game slump to beat Brantley 7-5 in the first round of the Class 1A South Regional Tournament on Friday.
The cloudy weather and drizzling rain didn’t dampen the spirits of the Lady Red Eagles in their early win over the Lady Bulldogs.
PHS came back in game two to beat McKenzie 11-0 to advance to the winner’s bracket finals, which will take place Saturday at 8 a.m., where the Lady Eagles play former area foe Kinston.
Florala was a little sleepy in its first game, losing 10-0 to KHS. However, the Lady Wildcats took care of business, dispatching of the Fruitdale Lady Pirates in a 15-0 rout.
FHS advances in the loser’s bracket, where it will face MCHS, also at 8 a.m. Saturday.
Pleasant Home needs to beat Kinston in today’s first game to earn a berth to the state tournament next week. If the Lady Wildcats lose their next game, then they’re out of the tournament.
Pleasant Home 7, Brantley 5
Pleasant Home’s Caitlin Jernigan drove in three runs on a hit to right field in the bottom of the third to push the Lady Eagles to a 7-2 lead, and the eventual win.
BHS scored one run in the top of the third on an RBI single from Kelsey Hall to make it 3-2 in the early back and forth contest.
Jernigan’s three-run hit could’ve been an inside-the park grand slam, but the home plate umpire said she didn’t touch home, thus calling her out.
PHS went on to hold BHS at bay despite a three-run sixth that cut the game to 7-5.
“(The Brantley game) was a huge win,” PHS coach Bradley Stephens said. “They beat us twice during the regular season, and they beat us once in our tournament, and then they beat us at their place.
“We had a bad inning (in the sixth), but we persevered,” he said. “We’ve been doing that a lot this year. They (BHS) hit the ball, there ain’t no doubt about it.”
Pleasant Home catcher Ashley Copeland, who had a big 3-and-0 RBI double in the first to make it 2-1, saved a Brantley run from scoring back scooping up a passed ball and making the tag on the line.
PHS senior Emily Byrd made her first start on the mound this season for the Lady Eagles, going six innings and striking out eight batters for the win.
Jernigan went 3-for-4 to lead PHS.
Pleasant Home 11, McKenzie 0
Abby Walker threw a no hitter in five innings to lead PHS in the win.
The Lady Eagles led 3-0 after the second inning, and took a 5-0 lead in the third on two consecutive RBI ground outs by Raven Woods and Brianna Dozier.
In the top of the fifth inning, PHS went ahead 8-0 after Dozier scored on a squeeze play to compliment her team’s excellent base running in the game. The Lady Eagles went up 9-0 later in the fifth when Jordan McGhee scored on a baulk.
Jernigan and Ashley Waldhour scored on a passed ball in the sixth to give their team a 11-0 advantage and win.
Anna Bulger and Jernigan went 2-for-4 each. Jernigan had a triple, and Bulger a double.
Florala 15, Fruitdale 0
The Lady Wildcats surged to a 10-0 lead in the first inning and never looked back, taking care of business after a slow start Friday morning.
FHS added four runs in the second and one run in the third inning to make it a quick three-inning affair.
Kinston 10, Florala 0
In Florala’s first game, the Lady Wildcats were plagued with errors in the field, where KHS took advantage by taking a 6-0 lead after the second inning.
“We were asleep this morning,” FHS coach Pat Maddox said. “We made errors on the field and at the plate. We helped the pitcher out.”