VINMEONT, Ala. – This week has been packed with important games that hold postseason implications, but Friday local county teams had to refocus and shift their attention to this year’s county baseball tournament at Vinemont High School. Vinemont, Hanceville and Fairview rolled on day one, knocking out Good Hope, Cold Springs and Holly Pond respectively to advance. Saturday’s slate will get started with Hanceville taking on West Point at 11 a.m. followed by Fairview and Vinemont at 1 p.m. with this year’s county championship game to follow.
Vinemont 11 – Good Hope 1 (Game one)
After Vinemont starter Colby Miller retired Good Hope in order to start off the game, the Eagles batted around in its opening at-bats. Will Rhodes and Colby Miller hit back-to-back singles, then Rhodes scored on an error and Deacon Samples hit a two-run single to left field to give them a 3-0 lead. They weren’t done yet as they started a two-out rally. Samples scored on another Raider error, Preston Williams hit an RBI single, and Ayden Thomason and Williams scored on the third Good Hope error of the inning and Vinemont went into the second inning up, 7-0.
The score remained the same until the fifth inning as Good Hope loaded up the bases with no outs and Caleb Rusk drew a walk to bring home the first Raider run of the game, but Thomason settled down and got the final three outs to keep the score at 7-1 after five innings. The Eagles looked to stretch their lead in the bottom of the sixth and they would do more than that as Collin Teichmiller and Samples hit back-to-back RBI singles, Mason McKinney hit a sacrifice fly, and Samples scored on a wild pitch to end the game and give the Eagles an 11-1 win as they advanced to take on Fairview Saturday.
Samples had another huge game at the plate as he finished with three hits and three RBIs for Vinemont. Teichmiller added two hits and an RBI. Williams collected a hit and an RBI, while McKinney added an RBI in the contest. Miller and Thomason allowed just a Paydon Bagwell single through six innings, walked seven and struck out four.
The Eagles will be back on the field Saturday at 1 p.m. to take on Fairview in the semifinals.
Hanceville 11 – Cold Springs 3 (Game two)
The Eagles put a pair of runs on the board in the top of the first when Ayden Alexander crossed the plate on a wild pitch and Brodi Williams drove in Roberto Ayala with an RBI single. The Bulldogs got one of the runs back in the bottom half of the first when Adam Cooper scored on a passed ball and after a scoreless second inning, Hanceville tied the game at 2 with an RBI single from Bo Joles.
Both teams were scoreless in the fourth, but the Bulldogs began to pull ahead in the bottom of the fifth. An RBI single from Cooper put Hanceville on top 3-2 and Carson Garrett scored on a fielder’s choice to make it a 4-2 game. Cooper successfully stole home later in the inning and the Bulldogs went into the sixth with a 5-2 advantage.
An RBI double off the bat of Drew Campbell drove in another run for Hanceville in the bottom of the sixth to make it 6-2 and another RBI double from Barrett Hardin plated two more runs to stretch the lead to 8-2. The lead continued to grow and after Cooper scored on an error, Justin Cornelius scored on a fielder’s choice and Joles scored on a wild pitch, the Bulldogs led Cold Springs 11-2 going into the final frame. The Eagles managed to push a run across the plate with a sacrifice fly from Williams, but they couldn’t get any closer than that and Hanceville went on to win it 11-3 and advance to the next round.
Zach Campbell finished 3-for-4 at the plate in the win and Hardin (one hit) and Joles (one hit) each finished with a pair of RBIs. Cooper (one RBI) posted two hits as well. Drew Campbell earned the win on the mound after tossing all seven innings, allowing three runs on five hits and striking out four batters.
Williams finished with a pair of hits and RBIs for Cold Springs in the loss and Brodee Bartlett added a pair of hits as well.
Hanceville will be back on the field at Vinemont High School to face top-seeded West Point Saturday at 11 a.m.
Fairview 10 – Holly Pond 0 (Game three)
After a scoreless opening frame, the Aggies took control in the bottom of the second. Three straight walks loaded the bases for Crimson Wright and he laced a 2-run single into right field to make it a 2-0 game. Caden Jennings scored on a passed ball to make it 3-0 and an RBI groundout from Jack Brown allowed Wright to cross the plate and make it 4-0. An error allowed Brody Hogeland to score and add another run to the lead and an RBI single from Levi Garner made it a 6-0 game going into the third inning.
Another error allowed the Aggies to tack on another run in the bottom of the third and Justin Hostetler scored on a passed ball in the fourth to make it an 8-0 game going into the fifth. After stealing second base in the bottom of the fifth, a pair of defensive errors allowed Jennings to score from second and Parker Martin ended things with an RBI double that secured a 10-0 win for Fairview in five innings.
John Humphreys got the start and the win for Fairview on the mound, tossing five shutout innings allowing just two hits. Wright posted a pair of hits and RBIs in the win and Martin (two hits) drove in a run as well.
Andrew Light and Charlie Huddleston posted the hits for Holly Pond in the loss.
Fairview will advance to play Vinemont in the semifinals Saturday at 1 p.m.
Other Friday scores:
Spain Park 5 – Cullman 1 (Softball)
Cullman took on Spain Park in its first of four Friday games at this year’s Pre-State Tournament at Heritage Park and the Lady Bearcats were held to just three hits in game number one and wound up dropping the opener to Spain Park, 5-1.
Spain Park hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the second to give them a quick 3-0 lead. Cullman got on the scoreboard in the top of the fourth inning as Savannah Davis hit a two-out single, which was followed by an Emma Claire Wilson RBI double, as they trimmed the deficit to two at 3-1, but Spain Park added two more runs in their half on an error and an RBI single and the Lady Bearcats went down in order in the fifth as they wound up falling in game one, 5-1.
Davis finished with two hits in the game while Wilson added a hit and an RBI for Cullman.
Cullman 6 – Jasper 3 (Softball)
Cullman faced off against Jasper in game two. The Lady Bearcats scored five runs in the first two innings and that was more than enough run support for starter Emma Claire Wilson as Cullman wound up winning the contest, 6-3.
The Lady Bearcats cooked up a two-out rally in its opening at-bats. Chalea Clemmons hit a double, then Davis and Wilson followed that up with consecutive RBI singles. Wilson then scored on a Jasper error to give Cullman an early 3-0 lead. The Lady Vikings hit a two-run home run in the top of the second to trim the Lady Bearcat lead to one at 3-2, but Cullman countered in their half. Shana Guest and Kylie Stracner drew back-to-back walks to lead off the bottom of the second and one out later, Faith Guest hit a two-run single to center field to give the Lady Bearcats a 5-2 lead.
Cullman added to their lead in the bottom of the third on a Dayln Phillip sacrifice fly. An RBI double by Jasper in the top of the fourth made it a 6-3 game, but Wilson struck out the next batter to end the game and the Lady Bearcats wound up victorious over the Lady Vikings, 6-3.
Faith Guest finished with a hit and two RBIs for Cullman. Wilson added a pair of hits and an RBI, Davis ended up with a hit and an RBI, Phillips collected an RBI, and Clemmons added a hit in the contest. Wilson gave up just five hits and three earned runs, walked none and struck out six.
Cullman 8 – McAdory 5 (Softball)
In its third matchup of the day, Cullman took on McAdory. The Lady Bearcats went on a huge rally late in the game and that was more than enough against McAdory as they ended up winning the game, 8-5.
Cullman struck first in its opening at-bats as back-to-back singles by Haley Shannon and Faith Guest later led to a sacrifice fly by Savannah Davis to give them a 1-0 lead, but McAdory tied the game at one in their half on a passed ball. Shana Guest hit an RBI groundout in the top of the second to give the Lady Bearcats a 2-1 lead, then Chalea Clemmons hit a solo home run with two outs in the top of the third to increase Cullman’s lead to 3-1. A suicide squeeze play by McAdory in their half made it a 3-2 game, then they tied the game in the fourth on an RBI double.
The Lady Bearcats quickly broke the tie in the top of the fifth. Faith Guest hit an RBI single, Clemmons added an RBI double, Emma Claire Wilson hit a two-run single, and Shana Guest hit a sacrifice fly to put Cullman on top by a score of 8-3, but McAdory made things a little interesting in their final at-bats as an RBI single and a sacrifice fly made it a three-run game. Clemmons got back-to-back lineouts to end the game and the Lady Bearcats got win no. 20 on the season as they defeated McAdory, 8-5.
Clemmons and Wilson each finished with two hits and two RBIs in the game for Cullman. Faith Guest and Davis each added a pair of hits and an RBI. Shana Guest collected a pair of RBIs. Shannon finished with two hits and Carlie Burnham added a hit as well.
Cullman 5 – American Christian Academy 2 (Softball)
Cullman faced off against American Christian Academy in its final game of the day at Heritage Park and the Lady Bearcats got a great pitching performance from Emma Claire Wilson as they ended up going 3-1 on the day after their 5-2 win over American Christian Academy.
Haley Shannon led off the game with a walk and later scored on a Davis RBI double to give Cullman an early 1-0 lead, but a sacrifice fly by American Christian Academy tied the game up at one going into the second inning. American Christian Academy broke the tie in the bottom of the second on an RBI double, but the Lady Bearcats got that run back and then some in the top of the third inning.
A single, an error and a walk loaded up the bases with one out and Shana Guest hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game up at two, then Dayln Phillips hit a two-run single to center field to give Cullman a 4-2 lead. Chalea Clemmons added a sacrifice fly in the top of the fourth to make a 5-2 game and Wilson induced a line out to end the game as the Lady Bearcats improve to 21-10 on the season after their 5-2 win over American Christian Academy.
Phillips finished with a hit and two RBIs for Cullman. Davis added a pair of hits and an RBI, while Clemmons ended up with a hit and an RBI. Shana Guest added an RBI in the contest and Shannon collected a pair of hits. Wilson gave up just six hits and two unearned runs in her four innings of work and struck out five while walking just one. The Lady Bearcats will travel to take on West Point Monday.
West Point 5 – Gardendale 1 (Softball)
West Point ended the day by facing off against Gardendale at Heritage Park and behind another huge pitching performance from Carlie Wilkins, the Lady Warriors defeated Gardendale 5-1.
Wilkins gave up a solo home run and then a double to start out her day, but she quickly settled down and struck out the next three batters to get out of the inning. West Point countered in a big way in their half. Lexi Shadix hit a one-out double and Wilkins reached on an error, then Sydney Sellers hit a two-run double and Braelee Quinn hit a two-run home run to give the Lady Warriors a 4-1 lead. West Point added to their lead in the bottom of the fourth on a Sellers RBI single and after getting off to a rough start, Wilkins allowed just one hit the rest of the way and the Lady Warriors wound up taking the game, 5-1.
Sellers led the way for West Point with two hits and three RBIs. Quinn added a hit and two RBIs. Wilkins finished with a pair of hits, while Bethany Minck, Shadix, Brindlee Phillips and Kylee Quinn each finished with a hit. The Lady Warriors will host Cullman on Monday.
Helena 5 – West Point 4 (Softball)
West Point took on Helena in its first of two Friday games at this year’s Pre-State Tournament at Heritage Park and a strong start from Helena proved to be costly for the Lady Warriors as they fell just short at the end, 5-4.
Helena scored on an RBI single, a two-run home run, and a wild pitch as they jumped out to a 4-0 lead after their opening at-bats. A leadoff home run by Braelee Quinn got West Point on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second as they made it a 4-1 game, but Helena added a sacrifice fly in the top of the third to give them a 5-1 lead.
The Lady Warriors got something going offensively in their half as Bethany Minck reached on a one-out error, then Lexi Shadix crushed a two-home run over the left field fence and Braelee Quinn added an RBI single as West Point cut the deficit to just one at 5-4. The Lady Warriors looked to win it in their final at-bats, but after a Nikki Tyree leadoff single, three straight outs ended the game and West Point was on the wrong end of a 5-4 defeat at the hands of Helena.
Quinn finished with two hits and two RBIs, while Shadix added a hit and two RBIs, including the two-run home run, and Tyree collected a hit as well.
Cold Springs 12 – Fairview 5 (Softball)
Cold Springs struck first in its opening at-bats. Kyla Aaron drew a leadoff walk and later scored on an Emma Black RBI groundout. Fairview got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second. Emma Roberts reached on a dropped third strike with one out, then Emily Benson and Isabella Lopez each hit back-to-back RBI singles to give the Lady Aggies a 2-1 lead after two innings.
The Lady Eagles got the lead right back in the top of the third as Anna Katherine Voce and Shay Sellers each hit RBI singles, but Emma Garcia tied the game at three in Fairview’s half on a sacrifice fly. Cold Springs broke the tie in the top of the fourth on a Maddie Pearl RBI single and they added four more runs in the top of the fifth on an error, RBI singles by Toni West and Heidi Nichols and a sacrifice fly by Aaron. The Lady Aggies made things a little more interesting in the bottom of the fifth as Devan Fulmer hit a two-run home run with two outs to make it an 8-5 game.
But the Lady Eagles pulled away in the top of the sixth. Toni West hit an RBI single and later scored on a dropped third strike, then Aaron hit a two-run single to center field to push their lead to seven at 12-5 and the Lady Aggies didn’t have an answer as Cold Springs won on the road over Fairview, 12-5.
Aaron led the way for Cold Springs with a hit and three RBIs. West added three hits and two RBIs. Pearl ended up with two hits and an RBI, while Voce, Black, and Nichols each finished with a hit and an RBI in the contest. For Fairview, Fulmer finished with two hits and two RBIs. Benson and Lopez each added a hit and an RBI. Garcia collected an RBI, while Kyleigh Aleman and Jaycee Aleman each finished with a hit in the game.
Cold Springs will host Good Hope on Monday, while Fairview will host Brewer Wednesday.
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