Lady Tigers fall to 0-5, but see improvement

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Despite the Greenville High School softball team falling to 0-5, first-year coach Donna Sunnycalb is still proud of her girls' effort during the three games they played in Friday and Saturday's Charles Henderson High School Lady Trojan Classic.

"You can only do so much in practice and a lot of the stuff we saw for the first time in game situations. You really can't prepare for game situations unless you are actually there. Sometimes you get better by making a mistake in a game situtation."

The Lady Tigers who were placed in a pool with 6A Dothan and 2A Marbury ended up falling to 0-2 at the end of Friday's competition. Despite the losses, the Lady Tigers were still able to compete in the first round of Saturday's bracket -play.

"I think this weekend was a good weekend," said Sunnycalb. "We got a lot of kids playing time this weekend. The Opelika game was a really pivotal game for us. We're losing by six runs in the fourth, but the kids came back and scored four runs. The kids came back and fought hard. I think that we are starting something good. We've just got to come back and eliminate all the errors."

The Lady Tigers were also able to add experience and power back into their lineup when Mikki Harris made her return to the diamond after spending the first few games

in the dugout nursing a knee injury that occurred during the final game of the Lady Tigers basketball season against Charles Henderson

High School.

"She hit well and fielded well and it made a difference in the infield," said Sunnycalb.

Now that they have the first base position settled, Sunnycalb and assistant coach Michell e Myrick will turn their attention towards second and third and finding a steady fit for those two positions on the base-path.

The Lady Tigers took the field on Friday with the intention of reversing their fortune. They had played two games earlier against St. James and Andalusia, both teams were in the tournament and in different pools. Against the Lady Bulldogs of Andy, Greenville was shut out and Halie Burnett ripped a single which turned out to stand as the Lady Tigers only hit through their game against St. James. The Lady Trojans Erin Pierce no-hit the Lady Tigers.

Against Dothan's group of red and black Lady Tigers, Greenville was able to post five hits. Freshman Brittany White went 2-for-2 at the plat with a single and she also recorded three strikeouts throughout the game. Harris went 1-for-3 in her first game back. Tara Gibson recorded a hit followed by Kristy Payne who had the first double of the season.

Despite the offensive explosion by the Lady Tigers, Greenville still came up short in the win column, but did produce three runs and dropped the first game of pool-play 5-3.

After a break, the Lady Tigers took the field once again. This time it was to close out Friday night's action when they took on the Marbury Lady Bulldogs.

The game was a tight affair between both schools. Marbury was able to break the stalemate in the bottom of the fourth inning with a three run inning.

The Greenville Lady Tigers shut off the Marbury offense and held them scoreless until the seventh inning when they posted a pair of runs to push the game to it's final of 5-0.

Offensively for the Lady Tigers, it was the usual suspects. White, Burnett, Harris and Gibson each recorded hits. Defensively, White closed out Friday with four more k's to add to her collection but fell to 0-4 on the season.

The Lady Tigers took the field Saturday morning still with a chance to walk away from the tournament with a trophy. They were paired up with the Opelika Lady Bulldogs in the first round of bracket-play.

Opelika jumped out early with a 1-0 lead and pushed it to 3-0 two innings later. The Lady Bulldogs tacked on three more runs in the top of the fourth inning to push further ahead 6-0.

But, the Gibson-led Lady Tigers battled back and were able to cut the lead in half with a four-run fourth inning. Gibson recorded two hits an RBI and a double. Payne and Ivory Crenshaw tacked on a pair of hits each. Harris, Burnett, White and Danita Crenshaw

each added a single hit in the game.

"I'm very proud of the way the girls fought in this game," said Sunnycalb.

"They played hard the whole game. We made huge positive steps in this game. I believe in these girls and what they can accomplish as a team. We are headed in the right direction, we just have some things that we need to work on."

Greenville High is taking the state graduation exam this week and the Lady Trojans will not be back in softball action until the weekend when they face Geneva High in the first round of the Andalusia High School Lady Bulldog Invitational tournament.