Gibbs Takes Out Soddy-Daisy, 7-6, On Walk-Off Double In State Softball

Clutch Hit Wipes Out Remarkable Five-Run Lady Trojans' Rally In Fifth Inning

Friday, May 23, 2014 - by Larry Fleming

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Soddy-Daisy’s Lady Trojans felt the ecstasy and agony in the span of two innings on Friday.

They were ecstatic after scoring five runs in the fifth inning to tie the game against Gibbs, 6-6.

And they agonized minutes later when Holly Moyers’ cracked a walk-off, game-winning double in the seventh inning to beat the Lady Trojans, 7-6, in an instant classic Class AAA state tournament softball game.

“Down 6-1 we got back even and had some opportunities to get a few more runs,” Lady Trojans coach Wes Skiles said after meeting with his players for 14 minutes. “Credit Gibbs because they fought hard. That’s a well-coached team and always has been.”

Trailing 6-1 after Gibbs – the home team in the loser’s bracket final – scored five times in the fourth, Soddy-Daisy banged out six consecutive hits, including Haley Reynolds’ three-run double, to stun the Lady Eagles in a remarkable show of mental toughness.

“We work on the mental stuff as much as anything else,” Skiles said. “We got punched in the mouth, but had the mental toughness to come back. After they scored five, it could have gone south in a hurry.”

The Lady Eagles (50-5) advanced to play Dickson County in the championship game later Friday afternoon. Gibbs would have to beat Lady Cougars to claim the title.

Soddy-Daisy, coming up short in its bid for a ninth state title, ended its season with a 37-10 record and third-place finish.

“This is definitely tough on me because it’s my senior year,” Soddy-Daisy first baseman Haley Reynolds said. “We wanted to win state although there were a lot of questions as to whether we could even get here. We would have liked a one or two finish, but I’ll settle for third if I have to.”

Gibbs had other ideas and the Lady Trojans were complicit – with two errors – in the fourth inning uprising.

Moyers, who was 3-for-4 with a run scored, had the only RBI hit in the inning. The Lady Eagles scored two runs on fielder’s choices and two Lady Trojans miscues – one by Reynolds and one by shortstop Jessica Boles.

Reynolds fielded a soft grounder, but made an errant toss to catcher Savannah Moore that allowed Leah Sohn to score the inning’s second run. Boles misplay led to Kaitlyn Trent scoring the fifth run.

After giving up a single to Cheyenne Boles (she was 4-for-4), Edwards retired Lexie Needham and Kaitlin Beeler to end the inning.

Rather than exhibiting complete frustration at what had just unfolded, the Lady Trojans turned inner anger into devastating display of timely hitting.

“We were very confident,” Reynolds said. “We trust each other and I knew we could do it. When I got the double I felt the hitters coming after me could score some more runs. We came back to tie it, but were hoping for more.”

Boles reached on an infield hit to deep shortstop.

Brooke Hale singled up the middle.

Cameren Swafford singled to right, loading the bases.

Reynolds followed with a bases-clearing double to right-center and the Lady Trojans had a full-blown rally in progress.

Grayson Brown singled to center.

Hannah Smith reached on an infield hit to reload the bases and Gibbs starter Rachel Farmer was clearly struggling in the circle. Farmer gave up 11 hits and six runs, five of them earned.

Moore rifled a liner to center field – the hardest hit ball in the inning – that was snagged by Faith Lowry for the first out.

Shana Ward singled to left with the Lady Trojans’ seventh hit in the inning. It also chased Farmer to the dugout.

Abby Hicks came on in relief to face Abby Walker, the ninth batter in the inning. Walker flied out to right field for the second out.

Boles flied out to center, stranding runners at second and third.

In the top of the seventh, Smith struck out and Moore singled to right field. But Shana Ward and Walker each grounded out to second, setting up Gibbs to win moments later.

“I’m proud of my three seniors,” Skiles said of Reynolds, Smith and Moore. “Their leadership on this team has been amazing. Our girls learned more about life than they did softball.

“I feel good about being in the top three teams in Tennessee. I was wishing for a first or second, but  you can’t control what you can’t control.”

Penney worked 3 1/3 innings and gave up eight hits and four runs, two of which were earned. Edwards went 2 2/3 innings and yielded four runs and

SUMMARY

Soddy-Daisy                           010 050 0 – 6 13 3

Gibbs                                      100 500 1 – 7 11 2

Penney, Edwards (4) and Moore; Farmer, Hicks (5) and McFarland.

(E-mail Larry Fleming at larryfleming44@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @larryfleming44)

 

 


Rhea County Picked To Win Region 4-5A

Rhea County's Golden Eagles have been picked to win the Region 4-5A championship in Murphy Fair's Tennessee High School Football magazine. Coach Mark Pemberton has led the Eagles to a state quarterfinal and two semifinals in his three years as head coach. Senior Mason Stephenson rushed for more than 1,400 yards last year and Eddie Bice ran for another 1,200. Ooltewah ... (click for more)

Wolcott Earns Medalist Honors In State Match Play

Ben Wolcott Shot 70 Friday and earned the medalist honors in the 16th Tennessee Match Play Championship at The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay. Thomas Chip from Knoxville finished as the No. 2 seed with a total of 135. The round of 16 and quarterfinals will be played on Saturday with the semifinals and final on Sunday. Tim Jackson took the No. 1 seeding in the Senior Division. ... (click for more)

Man, 28, Shot And Killed In East Chattanooga

A 28-year-old man was shot and killed in East Chattanooga early Friday morning. The victim was identified as Jeremy Clark, a brother of House candidate Dennis Clark. Dennis Clark said, "Jeremy, a beloved son, my younger brother and dear friend to many, was taken from us too soon. The pain from our sudden and tragic loss is Indescribable. He was a compassionate and fun-loving ... (click for more)

Michael Ford Sentenced To More Than 13 Years In Prison On Drug Charges

Michael Shawn Ford has been sentenced to 13 and a half years in prison on drug charges. On April 20, 2105, Ford was arrested at his house in East Ridge. Police found him hiding in the closet with a laundry bag which contained a loaded pistol and 7.9 grams of crystal meth. Officers said that two backpacks were found in the same bedroom, one with 257.3 grams of crystal meth ... (click for more)

Olympic Events On The Ocoee River Made History – But It Wasn’t Easy

It started with a simple “what if” question while Atlanta officials were working on a bid to host the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.  A group of amateur kayakers from the city began asking themselves: “What if Atlanta’s bid is successful? Then where would the Olympic whitewater canoe and kayak races be held?”  To some of the members of that group, the answer was obvious. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Don’t Kick A Man’s Neck

From the minute my brothers and I each became cognizant, my dad started teaching us the rules of becoming a man. Dad was from deep in Mississippi and he’d been taught a lot of life’s secrets from his father. These lessons have been passed for generations and, the older I have become, I’m convinced a lot of them were borne from The Sermon on the Mount. Our favorite, back in the ... (click for more)