For the third time in as many days, rain again wreaked havoc on the Texas Teen-Age Softball district tournaments. However, the District 7 Freshman Girls tournament was still able to determine its two state representatives before the stroke of midnight.
The Brownwood Crush and the Brownwood Lady Bears were slated to meet for the second time as deadline approached Thursday night, but by virtue of reaching the tournament final both teams will be headed to the state tournament in Rockdale beginning July 16.
The Crush won their first two games Thursday — 10-0 over the Ballinger New Breed and 9-3 over the Lady Bears — to advance to the tournament championship game. The Lady Bears rebounded from their loss to the Crush with a 13-7 victory over the Hawley Xtreme 4ce late Thursday night, their second win over Hawley during the tournament.
In Thursday’s first meeting of the Brownwood teams, the Crush scored seven runs in the top of the fifth inning to rally past the Lady Bears. The game was called after five complete innings due to the tournament’s second rain delay of the day.
Trailing 3-2, the Crush began the top of the fifth with a leadoff single from Sarah Garcia. Sydnie Darden followed with an RBI double to right-center field that plated Garcia and pulled the Crush even at 3-all.
Sydney Laws then reached on an error, which drove in Darden with the go-ahead run.
Up 4-3, the Crush tacked on two more runs as Cherita George drove home Laws and Jenna Chastain, who walked.
Two batters later, Mabrey Moore ripped a two-RBI single to left-center field that brought home George and Rikkie Loman, who drew a walk earlier in the inning.
The Crush’s final run of the fifth inning scored on Garcia’s RBI ground out which plated Idalia Quintero, who also reached on a walk.
The Lady Bears jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the second inning as the first three batters scored.
Kelbie Crelia led off the inning with a single to center field, then Sydnee Petty drew a walk. Sydney Maxwell followed with a two-RBI line drive down the third base line to score the first two Lady Bear runs.
With two outs in the inning, Emily Dick belted an RBI single to center field, which brought home Maxwell.
The Crush responded with two runs in the top of the third to trim the deficit to 3-2.
An RBI ground out by Laws knocked in Destiny Clements, who started the inning with a walk. Darden, who singled prior to Laws’ RBI, then scored on a wild pitch during Chastain’s at-bat.
Laws picked up the win on the rubber for the Crush as she fanned 12 batters. Crelia pitched for the Lady Bears and recorded seven strikeouts.
In the Lady Bears’ state-clinching win over Hawley, they blew open a 5-4 contest by exploding for eight runs in the bottom of the third inning.
Katie Laird’s RBI ground out plated Grace Randolf to push the Lady Bears’ lead to 6-4, then Shadie Hernandez scored from third on an errant throw back to the pitcher.
Crelia added a two-run double to increase the Lady Bears’ lead to 9-4, then she scored from second base when Petty drew a walk.
Randolf then reached on a two-out error that allowed Petty and Maxwell to score to push the advantage to 12-4.
The Lady Bears raced out to a 5-0 lead early before Hawley closed to within a run.
Brownwood scored four runs in the first on another two-RBI base hit by Crelia, an RBI bases-loaded walk by Maxwell and a dropped third strike during Hernandez’s at-bat, which allowed Crelia to score.
Crelia also recorded an RBI single in the second inning and she earned the victory in the circle, striking out six batters through the first three innings.
The Crush’s first game Thursday was a little less stressful as they cruised past the Ballinger New Breed, 10-0, in 3 1/2 innings.
Laws tossed a one-hitter with seven strikeouts in the win over Ballinger.
The Crush scored three runs in the first inning as Chastain, Alyson Finnigan and Karissa Means recorded RBIs on a single, walk and fielder’s choice, respectively.
Five more runs crossed the plate in the second for the Crush. Finnigan, Quintero and Darden each recorded an RBI walk, while Means had an RBI infield single. Laws scored the fifth run of the inning on an error.
The Crush added the final two runs they needed to enforce the run rule in the bottom of the third.
Chastain scored the Crush’s ninth run on the back end of a double steal with Loman. Loman then scored the final run when Moore grounded out to first for an RBI.
Action at the District 6 Junior Girls tournament at the Early City Park was postponed Thursday. All four of the scheduled games have been added to today’s schedule.
The junior girls tournament will resume at 1 p.m. today with the final six games on tap, including the championship game which is slated to begin at 7 p.m.
The District 7 Midget Girls tournament only got two of its scheduled five games in Thursday as the Brownwood Nitro lost to both the Hawley Diamonds, 20-1, and the Brownwood Young Guns, 10-0, to drop out of the tournament.
At least five, and possibly six games, will be played today as the tournament is set to be completed. Action begins at 2 p.m. with the championship game slated for an 8 p.m. start.