Straughn prepares for South Regional

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Macy Matthews takes a cut.

Macy Matthews takes a cut.

The Straughn Lady Tigers put together a solid 2016 softball season have earned a spot in the 2016 AHSAA Class 4A South Regional Softball Tournament in Gulf Shores beginning Friday.

“This is like a business trip for us,” Straughn head softball coach Kenny Skipper said. “Yeah, we are exciting to be going to Gulf Shores, but our biggest goal is to be playing in Montgomery in a week.”

It was strong performance in the Class 4A, Area 2 tournament in Headland that allowed the Lady Tigers to earn a spot in the South Regional.

“I really feel like we turned it up in the area tournament,” Skipper said. “We hit the ball well and had some very good pitching. One of our keys to success is that we can’t walk people. We have to let our defense work, and in the area tournament Hayden Willis threw four games and only walked one batter.”

After falling in the first game of the area tournament to Ashford, the Lady Tigers bounced back with a victory over Andalusia and then a victory over Ashford to eliminate the Lady Yellow Jackets from contention.

The first game against Ashford was a pitching duel, with the Lady Yellow Jackets pushing across a late run for the win.

After that loss, the Straughn bats, led by Kristin Peavey, began to heat up.

The Lady Tigers piled on the runs against cross-county rival Andalusia, including two massive home runs by Peavey.

In the pitching circle for the Lady Tigers, Hayden Willis has been the workhorse and gives her team a chance every time she is in their.

Straughn will take on Thomasville on Friday at 3 p.m., for the opening round or the Class 4A South Regional in Gulf Shores.

The winner will then play at 6 p.m., Friday and the loser will play at 7:30 p.m.

“From what I’ve seen on their schedule and from what I’ve heard from other people, they seem to be team that hits it around pretty well,” Skipper said of Thomasville. “I haven’t heard of any over powering pitcher, but I think they will have a few girls that will throw strikes and keep it around the plate…They haven’t been giving up a lot of runs so they must play pretty good defense.”

Skipper said that Thomasville has several young players in the lineup that could help out Straughn.

“They have some eighth and ninth graders playing on the team and with us having such a junior and senior laden team, it could be an advantage for us.”