Game 2: Hillgrove 5, Lowndes 3
Hillgrove scored three unearned runs in the top of the first, and took a lead it would not relinquish, on the way to a 5-3 win.
After Ferrell led off the game with a bunt single, Jarvis hit a potential double play ground ball to short. But the normally sure-handed Cara Parker couldn’t field the ball cleanly, and the Lady Hawks had two runners on. One out later, Kia Lang’s single to center loaded the bases.
Forrester hit a fly ball to right, and Ferrell tagged up and scored. Holland’s throw from right field was cut off by Floyd, who tried to throw Jarvis out at third. But the throw got away, and Jarvis ran home. Maddie Garner followed with an RBI single, giving Hillgrove a 3-0 lead.
Leading off the bottom of the first, Parker drilled a long fly ball over the right field fence for an opposite field home run, making it 3-1.
Forrester led off the third with a solo homer to center, giving Hillgrove a 4-1 lead.
In the top of the fifth, Lang walked to start the inning, took second on a wild pitch, stole third and scored on Katheryn Jackson’s two-out single to left, making it 5-1.
Lowndes had its chances to score throughout the game. But the Vikettes stranded runners at first and second in five of the first six innings. They left a total of 11 runners on base in game 2.
Down to their final three outs, Lowndes tried to rally in the bottom of the seventh. Prairie and Robinson started the inning with singles to right. With runners on the corners and one out, Floyd also singled to right, scoring Woods, who was running for Prairie.
At that point, Hillgrove coach Laura Voyles brought in Evans to pitch. Keeli Jackson drove in Robinson with a ground ball, making it 5-3. Lowndes had the tying run coming to the plate. But Evans got the next hitter to ground out to first to end the game, and the Vikettes’ season.
Taylor DeCelles, Hillgrove’s freshman southpaw, was the winning pitcher, allowing three runs and 12 hits in 6 1/3 innings and striking out three. Evans got the final two outs for the save.
Eason, Lowndes’ freshman southpaw, started the game and allowed four runs, only one of which was earned, and five hits in three innings. Bishop pitched the final four innings, allowing one run and one hit.