GPS Loses 5-4 Heartbreaker To Pope John Paul II In D-II Opener

Seventh-Inning Error By Bruisers Opens Door For Lady Knights

Tuesday, May 21, 2013 - by John Hunt
- photo by Greg Davick

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Pope John Paul II scored the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning Tuesday evening to beat GPS 5-4 in the opening game of the Division II AA state softball tournament  here at the Starplex Field No. 3.

Taylor Battles had an RBI-single in the top of the sixth for the Bruisers to knot the score at 4-4, but the only error of the game by GPS in the seventh proved to be a costly one as the Lady Knights prevailed.

Chelsie Smith grounded to third for the first out before Anna Buchanan lined a single to right that eluded the fielder and rolled to the fence as Buchanan raced to third.

Corey Swafford coaxed Chelsey Stephenson into a come-backer for the second out and it looked like GPS might escape, but Chelsie Fair had other ideas.

Catcher Katy Richardson stood up and called for a pitchout, but Swafford's delivery wasn't far enough outside.  Fair, who had ripped a solo homer in the third, poked a single to right as Buchanan raced  home with the winning run as the Lady Knights exploded toward home plate to celebrate.

"That was fun," said Pope John Paul II coach Jody Brothers after his team had improved to 25-18 overall.

"That's our best all-around game all year.  That was a great job by Anna to get on base before Chelsie got a good pitch and hit it.  Defense and pitching has been our strength this year and we got rewarded tonight for it.

"We've never been in this position before as this was the first time we've ever beaten GPS.  Of course, they won't give us a trophy for winning this game, but we're looking forward to a day off tomorrow.  We lost to GPS 7-0 earlier, but we found a way to win tonight," Brothers added.

GPS coach Susan Crownover was anything but happy with the way her team played.

"That's just one play," she said, referring to the game-winning hit by the Lady Knights.

"Not getting a hit with the bases loaded hurt.  And of course, we have to stop walking people, but Pope John Paul played with a lot of enthusiasm tonight and they wanted it worse than we did.

"This tournament isn't over as tomorrow is another day, but I'm disapppointed.  We didn't play very well as we were uptight, but they deserved to win this game," Crownover added.

The Lady Knights took a 1-0 lead in the first when Chelsie Smith walked and went to second when Buchanan got hit by a pitch.  Smith then stole third and scored when Buchanan stole second and Smith beat the throw home.

Madi Stanley's two-run homer in the second gave GPS a 2-1 edge before a bases-loaded walk to LeeAnn Jackson made it 3-1 in the third.

Fair's two-out homer in the third drew the Lady Knights within 3-2 before Smith gave her team the lead with a two-run homer with two outs in the fourth.

Battle's single in the sixth drove in Stephanie George, who had led off the inning with a double to right-center, to knot the score before Fair's game-winner in the bottom of the seventh.

GPS finished the game with eight hits as Richardson was the Bruiser with two.  The Lady Knights were limited to just five hits, but two were home runs accounting for three runs.  Fair had two hits while Smith, Buchanan and Hannah Nivison all finished with one apiece.

The Lady Knights will be off on Wednesday as they await the winner of the Baylor-St. Benedict game.  GPS will play the loser of that game on Wednesday at 6:30 Chattanooga time.

Girls Preparatory School  021 001 0 -- 4 8 1

Pope John Paul II      101 200 1 -- 5 5 1

Stanley, Swafford (4) and Richardson; Stephenson and Lewis.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@comcast.net

 


Signal Mountain Falls In State Volleyball Semis

SMYRNA, Tenn. – It’s a good thing that Signal Mountain volleyball coach Jennifer Redman is a young lady because her heart might not be able to stand the pressure if she wasn’t. Redman’s Lady Eagles were thisclose to being sent to the loser’s bracket in the opening round of the State Volleyball Tournament here at Stewarts Creek High School Wednesday afternoon. Had it been a ... (click for more)

Red Bank Eliminated From State Volleyball

SMYRNA, Tenn. – The TSSAA State Volleyball tournament didn’t start off like the Red Bank Lionettes would have liked. It didn’t end like they wanted either as they got eliminated by the Lady Indians of Harpeth. Red Bank ended its season at 28-27 following the three-set 25-6, 25-16 and 25-15 loss in its second match of the day. Facing the Lady Irish from Knoxville Catholic ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Firm Gets $1,010,000 Contract For Overseeing VW Expansion For New SUV Line

A Chattanooga firm is getting the contract for overseeing the construction work for the new SUV line at the Volkswagen plant. Officials said the EMJ Corporation has been selected for the project that will give a new surge of activity and employment at the plant at the Enterprise South Industrial Park. The work includes additions to the body shop and tech center and adding ... (click for more)

Man Airlifted To Erlanger After Early Morning Crash In Bradley County

Bradley County EMS responded to an early morning crash Thursday at 7 a.m. at the intersection of Lauderdale Memorial Highway and Walker Valley Road in Charleston. Three ambulances and an EMS supervisor responded to the scene. There were three vehicles involved and one car left the roadway.   One adult man suffered serious injuries and it was determined that he needed ... (click for more)

Chairs Cost How Much?

Many times while growing up, I would go to the store with my parents. More often than not, I would see something I wanted, and ask my parents to buy it for me. More often than not, they said no. “Why?” I asked. “Son, money doesn’t grow on trees.” That’s a phrase I’m sure many of us have heard more than once over the course of our lives. However, I have since learned that they were ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Dear Friend Luther

One sunny morning in June years ago, the renowned radio icon Luther Masingill was on his way back to the WDEF studios on South Broad Street when he stopped for a red light and noticed a young couple in a car idling next to his familiar light blue Ford pickup. “What caught my eye was a buck-toothed boy eating a banana in the back seat,” he explained in an aside to that day’s lunchtime ... (click for more)