AREA SOFTBALL TOURNAMENTS: West Point wins area title, Cullman advances to North Regional, Thursday scoring wrap-up

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The Lady Warriors defeated Brewer 11-8 to win this year's 5A Area 14 championship. (Photo courtesy of Heith Yearwood)

Two more local squads punched their tickets to regional tournaments tonight and the Lady Warriors of West Point did it by winning the 5A Area 14 title. West Point defeated Arab 13-3 and topped Brewer twice to win the area crown Thursday while the Cullman Lady Bearcats split a pair of matchups with Decatur and Hartselle to finish as runners-up at the 6A Area 14 tournament.

West Point 11 – Brewer 8 (Area Championship Game)

West Point took on Brewer in a rematch Thursday night, this time, for the Class 5A, Area 14 championship. The Lady Warriors struck first in their opening at-bats on a sacrifice fly by Wilkins. They made it 2-0 in the second as Abbott scored on a Lady Patriot error and Braelee Quinn’s solo home run in the third made it 3-0. Brewer hit a home run of their own to make it a 3-1 game in the top of the fourth.

Carlie Wilkins and Sydney Sellers each hit two-run singles in the bottom of the fourth to increase West Point’s lead to 7-1. Brewer made it 7-2 in the fifth on an RBI double, and they took an 8-7 lead on four West Point errors and a bases-loaded walk in the sixth. The Lady Warriors tied it up at eight in their half of the inning on a Sellers RBI double and they made it 11-8 on an Abbott two-run double and a Wilkins RBI single. Wilkins worked around a one-out error and a walk in the top of the seventh to get the final two outs of the game as West Point clinched the area title with an 11-8 win.

Wilkins finished the game with two hits and four RBIs for the Lady Warriors. Sellers added two hits and three RBIs. Abbott collected three hits, two RBIs, and three runs scored. Quinn added the home run and two runs scored, while Molly Pendley finished with four hits and a run scored. West Point will play in the North Regional at Coffee O’Neal Park in Florence next Friday at noon. 

West Point 13 – Arab 3

West Point took on Arab in the losers’ bracket game for a chance to move on to take on Brewer. The Lady Knights struck first in their opening at-bats on an RBI double, but the Lady Warriors countered in their half. Gracie Abbott drew a leadoff walk and later scored on a passed ball to tie the game at one. Later in the inning, Kayleigh Hayney scored on another passed ball, Makayla Brown stole home and Gracie Thompson hit an RBI infield single to give them a 4-1 lead after one.

Abbott scored on another passed ball in the second inning to make it a 5-1 score. A solo home run and an RBI double by Arab cut West Point’s lead to 5-3, but a suicide squeeze play by Braelee Quinn brought home Lexi Shadix to push the Lady Warrior lead to 6-3 after three innings.

They pulled away in the next half-inning on RBI singles by Abbott, Molly Pendley, Brown, and Shadix, a sacrifice fly by Thompson, and an RBI single by Quinn. Shadix added another RBI single in the fifth to put the final score at 13-3. 

Shadix finished with two hits, two RBIs and three runs scored for West Point. Quinn added a hit and a pair of RBIs. Thompson chipped in with two RBIs of her own, while Abbott (two hits and three runs scored), Pendley (two hits and two runs scored), and Brown (one hit and two runs scored) each collected an RBI. Carlie Wilkins gave up just six hits and three runs, two earned, walked two, and struck out six in her five innings of work.  

West Point 11 – Brewer 1 

West Point took on Brewer in the next round for a chance to play them again for the Class 5A, Area 14 title in the next game. Shadix put the Lady Warriors on the board first on a sacrifice fly, then Brewer tied the game up at one in their half on a West Point error. The Lady Warriors, though, retook the lead on a Thompson RBI single in the third inning.

They quickly pulled away in the fifth inning, putting up four runs on RBI singles by Thompson and Bethany Minck, and a two-run single by Abbott, and West Point added four more in the sixth, with the big blow coming on a Shadix three-run homer, and added another one on a Lady Patriot error as the Lady Warriors wound up taking the game, 11-1, to move on to the area championship game.

Shadix had another big game, finishing with two hits, four RBIs, and two runs scored. Thompson added two hits, three RBIs, and a run scored. Abbott collected a hit and two RBIs, while Minck finished with two hits and an RBI. Wilkins completely shut down Brewer’s offense from the start, allowing just one hit and one unearned run, walking six, and striking out five.

Cullman 11 – Decatur 10 

Cullman took on Decatur as they looked to keep their season alive. The Lady Red Raiders, though, started the game out strong, as a two-run double and a two-run home run quickly put them up 4-0. The Lady Bearcats got on the scoreboard in their half on a Savannah Davis RBI single, and they made it a 4-3 game on a Sydney Holder two-run single. Olivia Hudson scored on a passed ball in the third to tie it up at four.

In the top of the fifth, Decatur took a 7-4 lead on a two-run triple and an RBI single, but Cullman countered in their half as an error by the Lady Red Raiders allowed Hudson and Davis to score to make it 7-6. Carlie Burnham hit an RBI groundout to tie it up at seven, then a Holder RBI double gave Cullman an 8-7 lead.

Decatur retook the lead in the sixth on a two-run single and an RBI double. The Lady Bearcats looked to win the game in the bottom of the seventh with two outs. A Holder RBI single made it 10-9, then Faith Guest tied the game up on an RBI single. McKenna Kline crossed the plate to complete the Cullman comeback as they wound up winning the game, 11-10.

Holder finished the game with three hits and four RBIs for Cullman. Guest and Davis (one run scored) each collected two hits and an RBI in the contest. Burnham chipped in with an RBI and a run scored.

Hartselle 9 – Cullman 5 

Cullman took on Hartselle for a chance to play them again for the Class 6A, Area 14 championship later on in the day. The Lady Bearcats struck first on an RBI single by Alex Stansell in their opening at-bats, but Hartselle tied it up at one on a Cullman error in their half of the inning.

The Lady Tigers broke the tie in the second on a walk and a grand slam made it 6-1. Hartselle made it 9-1 in the fourth on an RBI double and a two-run double. 

The Lady Bearcats looked to get back in the contest late in the game. A Burnham RBI single in the sixth cut it to 9-2, and Cullman got a rally started in the seventh inning. Kline reached on an error and Faith Guest hit a single with one out, then Davis hit a three-run home run to make it a 9-5 game. The Lady Bearcats looked to creep even closer after a walk and a single, but a groundout and a strikeout ended their chances as they wound up falling 9-5.

Davis finished with a hit, three RBIs, and a run scored for Cullman. Stansell added a pair of hits and an RBI, while Burnham chipped in with a hit and RBI of her own. Ashlen Heatherly finished with three hits and a run scored. Guest added a pair of hits and a run scored, while Kline chipped in with a hit and two runs scored. The Lady Bearcats will play in the North Regional next Thursday at Coffee O’Neal Park in Florence.

Other Thursday scores:

Sulligent 3 – Cold Springs 2

Winston County 8 – Addison 0

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