Lady Eagles beat Kinston, earn state tourney berth

Published 1:38 am Saturday, May 12, 2012

GULF SHORES — Pleasant Home scored four runs in the bottom of the third inning and the Lady Eagles went on to beat Kinston 9-2 just after midnight at the Class 1A South Regional Softball Tournament.

With this victory, PHS earned a berth to play in the state tournament next week at Lagoon Park in Montgomery.

Emily Byrd pitched an impressive complete game, striking out eight batters and allowing two runs.

The Lady Eagles scored three runs with two outs in the bottom of the first inning to take an early 3-1 lead. Anna Bulger scored on a Byrd single; and Brianna Dozier hit a two-run triple.

In a season series with Kinston, Pleasant Home had only beaten the Lady Bulldogs only once before at its annual tournament in April.

And in the game tonight against KHS, the Lady Eagles hit the ball, which turned out to be the difference in the game.

“There wasn’t none of this reaching on by an error,” PHS coach Bradley Stephens said. “We just hit them.”

Stephens said that he was confident going into the game against the Lady Bulldogs.

“They stepped up, and they did what they were supposed to do,” he said. “They showed what kind of team they are tonight. They beat a very good Kinston team tonight.”

Raven Woods got the scoring started for PHS in the bottom of the third with an RBI double that scored the courtesy runner for Ashley Copeland, who reached on a double.

Dozier got another RBI on a ground out; Abigail Kelley hit an RBI triple; and Jordan McGhee RBI singled to end the scoring run for the Lady Eagles (28-13).

Pleasant Home took a 9-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth on a two-run single from Helena Weaver.

Kinston scored on a passed ball in the top of the sixth.

Pleasant Home will play in the tournament finals at 10 a.m. today. Kinston plays the winner of Brantley-Fruitdale at 8:30 a.m. today.

Florala ends season at regionals

The Florala Lady Wildcats fell 14-2 to Brantley in the loser’s bracket, ending the season at the regional tournament.

FHS coach Phillip Smith said it was a good season, and that the team will work hard in the off season to get ready for next year.

“We finished with a good season. We played hard. I’m proud of them,” Smith said. “We’ll try to get a little better.”

FHS finished with 16 wins this season.