2nd goal accomplished
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 11, 2010
GULF SHORES — Straughn completed its second season goal of three Saturday — winning the Class 3A South Regional Softball Tournament at the Gulf Shores Sports Complex.
The Lady Tigers beat Headland 3-0 in the winner’s bracket championship game, and defeated Luverne 3-2 to secure a spot at the state tournament this week.
Straughn put up great defensive effort throughout the tournament, only allowing three runs.
Head coach Ray Wilson said he agreed that his team played great defense Saturday.
“It was 3-2, and 3-0,” Wilson said. “That game right there (against Headland), we left a lot runners in scoring position.
“We’ve got to do better at that,” he said. “That’s they key to winning because we’ll be playing better and better teams at the state tournament.”
Straughn’s Kaitlynn Wiggins was selected as the Class 3A South Regional most valuable palyer for the tournament.
Straughn 3, Headland 0
Wiggins pitched a complete game against the Lady Rams, allowing no runs on six hits and struck out three.
Throughout the game, Straughn’s infield shut down 14 batters with ground outs. The outfield helped out with three of its own.
The game remained scoreless until the bottom of the third inning when the Lady Tigers (32-11-1) scored two runs on one hit and one error.
Straughn’s Megan Johns led off with a walk and later scored on a fielder’s choice by Stephanie Bracewell.
Then, Wiggins hit Bracewell in with a double to put the team ahead 2-0.
In the top half of the third inning, Straughn executed a seamless 1-6-3 double play on a grounder from Headland’s Kalie Jones to turn the game around.
Wilson said the team played great on the defensive side of the ball in the tournament.
“Again, we played consistent and had good defense the entire tournament here,” he said. “We’re going to have to continue to do that. We pitched well. Both Katy and Kaitlynn pitched well down here, so that’s going to be the ingredient that we need as well next weekend.”
Wiggins threw the ball to shortstop Kayla Messer, who tagged up at second and then threw Jones out at first.
The Lady Tigers added their last run in the sixth inning on an RBI single from Johns to score Tori Bracewell.
T. Bracewell was 2-for-3 with two singles and two runs; Johns was 1-for-3 with one single, one run and one RBI; and S. Bracewell was 0-for-3 with one RBI and one run.
Straughn 3, Luverne 2
Wiggins struck out 11 and allowed three hits and two runs to help lead her team to another state tournament berth.
Straughn struck first with two runs in the bottom of the first inning on two hits and one walk.
S. Bracewell scored on a walk from Messer; and Messer later scored on a single from Katy Messick.
Straughn added an insurance run in the third inning when T. Bracewell singled Wiggins in to score.
Luverne made things interesting for Straughn scoring two runs on a single.
When asked what he thinks his team learned from the weekend, Wilson said that the girls learned to take it one game at time.
“They just have worked hard all year and have set their goals for this year,” he said. “We’re just trying to take each step one at a time — one goal at a time.”