Ooltewah Crushes East Hamilton, 10-1, In 5-AAA Softball Upset

Soddy-Daisy Holds Off Walker Valley, 5-3, To Set Up Monday Showdown

Saturday, May 3, 2014 - by Larry Fleming

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – Fourth-seeded Ooltewah unleashed a six-run second on top-seed East Hamilton on a chilly Saturday morning and went on to crush the Lady Hurricanes, 10-1, in the District 5-AAA softball tournament at Cleveland High School.

Ooltewah advanced to the winner’s bracket final on Monday at 7 p.m. when it takes on No. 2 Soddy-Daisy, with the winner securing a berth in the Region 3-AAA tournament. The Lady Trojans beat Walker Valley, 5-3, on Saturday.

East Hamilton bounced back later in the day to rout Bradley Central, 15-5, scoring 10 runs in the first inning. The Lady Hurricanes (24-9) will play Walker Valley in an elimination game on Monday at 5 p.m.

The Lady Owls used a perfect blend of pitching, hitting and defense to upset the Lady Hurricanes.

Cameron Baltimore fired a one-hitter and the East Hamilton run was unearned in going the distance.

“I told the girls to be aggressive at the plate because I was confident Cameron was going to throw the best game of her life,” Lady Owls coach Jon Massey said. “She did a great job and that six-run inning helped a lot.”

Shelby Duggard’s bloop single to shallow center in the third inning was the lone hit off Baltimore, who retired 13 of the final 14 batters. The only hiccup in the streak was Alyssa Strickler reaching on a one-out infield error in the seventh.

Until that error, Baltimore had retired 11 in a row. She allowed only two other runners – on an error and a walk in the second inning – after stopping McMinn County on four hits in Friday’s 9-2 win.

“I felt great out there,” said Baltimore, who is 14-4 on the season. “I was relieved to have the six-run cushion because I didn’t have to worry as much.

The Lady Owls’ second-inning outburst practically settled the outcome, especially with the Lady Hurricanes having all sorts of trouble handling Baltimore’s pitches.

Aubie Collake started the inning with a single to left. On a 2-1 pitch, Novelli, a Tennessee Wesleyan softball signee, belted a two-run homer to trigger the scoring.

“I hit an outside fastball and it was my first home run this season,” Novelli said. “They haven’t come as often this year as last year.”

After Shelby Sutton flied out, Josie Cain flipped a single to left and Ashunti Cooper grounded out. Tiera Lemon and Allie Jones each walked to load the bases.

Sullivan, who will play volleyball at Middle Tennessee State, smacked a one-hop double to the fence in left field to drive in three runs, pushing the Lady Owls’ lead to 5-0.

Summer Williams’ double drove Sullivan home with the sixth run of the inning. Sullivan added a sacrifice fly in the seventh, giving her four RBIs on the day.

“It felt good getting a hit like that against our big rival,” Sullivan said. “They beat us really bad the first time we played them, but that big inning gave us a confidence boost. We came out swinging.”

East Hamilton coach Norma Nelson used two pitchers – starter Rachel Gamble and reliever Shelby Duggard in the second inning and they used up 36 combined pitches to finally end the uprising.

Duggard needed 33 pitches to get out of the third, yet she escaped without giving up a run despite Ooltewah loading the bases with two out. Cain singled and Cooper and Lemon drew walks. Duggard whiffed Jones to end the threat.

“We were bad,” Nelson said. “We didn’t hit and didn’t pitch it. Rachel told me she didn’t know what was wrong, but she sure didn’t have her good stuff. I probably should have pulled her sooner.

“Once Ooltewah got some runs they got more confident and kept on hitting.”

Ooltewah banged out 15 hits, second-best total of the season, six different players finished with two hits.

Soddy-Daisy 5, Walker Valley 3: Shonna Penney (15-3) went five-plus innings to pick up the win for the Lady Trojans (30-7). Emily Edwards came on in the sixth with two outs to stop the Lady Mustangs’ two-run inning.

In the seventh, Edwards gave up a hit, but the Lady Trojans turned a double play. Walker Valley’s Haley Davis doubled and the next two batters walked to load the bases. Edwards induced a groundout to end the game.

“It wasn’t easy for us,” Lady Trojans coach Wes Skiles said.  “The double play gave us a little momentum, but they came right back at us. Our girls did a good job of not panicking under pressure and got out of it. We made it interesting for sure and my hat’s off to Walker Valley for not laying down.”

Haley Reynolds went 2-for-4 for Soddy-Daisy with a solo home run and double that drove in two runs. Shana Ward was 3-for-3 with a RBI and Abbie Walker was 2-for-3, including a solo homer in the sixth.

On Friday, Soddy-Daisy knocked off Cleveland, 11-0, in six innings.

Edwards (15-4) picked up the win – she got her third save in Saturday’s game.

Reynolds was 4-for-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and scored a run.

Grayson Brown added two hits, including two doubles, and three RBIs.

Abbie Walker went 3-for-3 with two doubles and a RBI.

Savannah Moore had two hits, including a sixth inning three-run homer – her second – that ended the game due to the TSSAA mercy rule.


Ooltewah                               060 011 2 – 10 15 3

East Hamilton                       001 000 0 – 1 1 0

Baltimore and Williams; Gamble, Duggard (2) and Brooks.

Walker Valley                        000 012 0 – 3 8 0

Soddy-Daisy                         300 011 x – 5 11 1

WP – Shonna Penney; Save – Emily Edwards.

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



Signal Mountain's Porter, Luthringer Win Front Runner Titles

Signal Mountain's Taylor Luthringer and Thomas Porter were the individual winners of the annual Front Runner Invitational cross country race at Baylor Thursday afternoon while the Baylor girls and the McCallie boys were the team champions. Luthringer covered the 3.1-mile course in 19 minutes, three seconds to beat runner-up Carley Braman of GPS by 35 seconds.  Kathryn ... (click for more)

11th Ranked Bryan Ties 7th Ranked Campbellsville

Coming off a 2-1 double overtime victory on Tuesday that topped a Reinhardt University (Ga.) team that just recently fell from the top-25 in the NAIA, the 11th ranked Bryan College Men’s Soccer team continued their extraordinary undefeated season on Thursday night with their second 0-0 draw against a top-10 team in the nation, 7th ranked Campbellsville University. Both the Lions ... (click for more)

Domestic Assault Charge Dismissed Against Bobby Stone In Case Involving Mayor's Top Advisor

A charge of domestic assault was dismissed Friday morning against Bobby Stone in a case involving a top advisor to Mayor Andy Berke.  District Attorney Neal Pinkston said Mr. Stone was not read his Miranda rights and the arrest was based on his statement. He also cited the involvement in the arrest by the mayor's office with Chief of Staff Stacy Richardson going to the ... (click for more)

Firefighters Respond To Commercial Fire In Alton Park

The Chattanooga Fire Department on Thursday responded to a fire at Metalcasting Minerals Technologies at 3406 Alton Park Blvd. with five fire companies. Battalion Chief Ashley May said a hopper was full of combustible materials and a small area was on fire. Firefighters opened the hopper's hatch and applied large amounts of water and foam to the burning coal dust-type material. ... (click for more)

Literacy Is Critical

Government spending is often portrayed as a freight train "quickly running out of track." And there is some truth to that statement. There is not an endless supply of money to fund every good idea that comes along, and we must acknowledge that problem. Fiscal responsibility is a must.  That is why spending on priority issues like public education is important. You can spend ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Prayer Over Despair

As a strong proponent of early voting, I joined hundreds at the Hamilton County Election Commission headquarters on Amnicola Highway yesterday to exercise what I consider one of our greatest freedoms – “for the people, by the people.” Candidly, I have never been as upset or as disappointed over my choices for President in my life. Locally I am fine with our candidates but to pick ... (click for more)