2010-05-07 / Sports

Lady Eagles Cook Rice in 2

by Mike Organ

Ashton Johnston is safe at first after a Rice Consolidated fielder missed the toss for a potential out. PHOTO BY NANCY ORGAN. Ashton Johnston is safe at first after a Rice Consolidated fielder missed the toss for a potential out. PHOTO BY NANCY ORGAN. The Lady Eagles advanced to the Area round of the state playoffs with 5-3, 13-6 wins over Rice Consolidated in a best of three Bi-District match. Rice took a 3-0 lead in the Friday night game. Lexington bats awakened late in the game to score five unanswered runs to take the win. Saturday afternoon, the bats were still alive as the first five Lady Eagle batters scored before Rice could retire the side.

The first game was held Friday. The Lady Eagles were not on the right page to start the game. Rice scored two unearned runs without the benefit of a hit in the top of the first. Another run crossed the plate after an fielding error had allowed the Rice player first base. The error coupled with two hits produced the run, also unearned.

Lexington did not get a hit until Mackenzie Brown doubled down the right field line with two out in the third. Brown got to third on a slap single by Megan Scantlin but the Lady Eagles were unable to get either runner home.

The next Lady Eagle hit came in the fourth inning. Shelby Tackett singled with one out. Tackett pulled off an unintentional delayed steal of second. She moved to third on a wild pitch. Haley Jatzlau delivered a double to the outfield wall for the Eagles’ first run.

The next inning Lexington tied the game on three hits. Caity Holt led off with a double over the outfield. Veronica Richardson ran for Holt. Scantlin then tripled to right centerfield sending Richardson home. Jessica Parish then singled to plate Scantlin with the tying run. Lexington had scored three unanswered runs and they were not through.

Jatzlau reached on a fielder’s choice to set the stage. Marley Ross hit a slow spinning roller toward first base. When the Rice first baseman reached for the ball, it hit her glove and rolled foul. The second baseman came over to help and the confusion that followed allowed Ross to reach first safely and Jatzlau to move to third. Holt was called on to bunt and bunt she did. Holt pushed a bunt perfectly placed between the pitcher and first baseman that allowed Jatzlau to score the winning run. Parish then singled home Scantlin with an insurance run that made Eagle fans breathe easier.

The Eagles put the Lady Raiders out in order in the top of the seventh. Johnston reached on an error by the third baseman. Parish smoked a grounder to shortstop that was caught on one bounce and the advancing Scantlin was tagged as Brown scored. Tackett singled as Johnston motored home. Parish then scored as the second baseman made a wild throw to home and Tackett ended up at third. Robertson singled to score Tackett and give Lexington an 11-1 lead.

Lexington fans were thinking mercy rule at this time because it was HOT and there was no concession stand to get drinks. It was not to be as Rice mustered a charge. Four runs in the bottom of the fourth closed the score to 11-5. Another run in the bottom of the sixth made it 11-6.

The Lady Eagles turned offensive again. Johnston singled with one out in the seventh. Parish singled to put runners on first and second. Tackett singled home Johnston with Parish moving to third. A delayed steal of home by Parish got things going between the teams verbally. Parish baited the catcher to throw the ball to third to pick her off. Instead as the catcher threw, she broke for home and scored sliding in head first. After the play, both teams were warned about some verbal bantering. Lexington led 13-6.

A strike out and a walk gave Rice promise in the seventh. A grounder to Jatzlau resulted in a toss to Parish to force out the runner. A grounder up the middle was fielded by Parish as she ran toward second. Parish picked the grounder and stepped on second for the third out, ending Rice’s season and sending Lexington into the second round of the playoffs.

The Lady Eagles will play Poth, currently ranked sixth in the state by the Texas Girls Coaches Association.

The Lady Eagles played Poth once before when they were ranked #2 in the state and beat them 3-2 in eight innings in San Marcos.

The Lady Eagle bats were still alive in the heat Saturday afternoon. The first five Lady Eagle batters scored before Rice could get the side out. Scantlin led off with a single. Johnston followed with another one-baser. A wild throw from the third baseman on Johnston’s slapper allowed a hustling Scantlin to score. Parish doubled to drive home the second run. Tackett came with another double as Parish cruised home. Courtney Robertson singled home Tackett with the fourth run. Jordin Kelley, courtesy running for Robertson, scored on Marley Ross’ single as Lexington sent 10 batters to the plate in the top of the first.

Lexington added another score in the second as Johnston singled and Parish singled to get things started. Robertson walked to load the bases. Jatzlau singled home two runs before two infield pops ended the uprising. Lexington led 6-0. Rice got one run back in the bottom of the second on a single, wild pitches, and a passed ball on a third strike.

Lexington put up four more markers in the third inning. Brown led off with a bunt single. Scantlin walked, and

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