Both teams had their scoring chances on Tuesday in a Region 7-AA matchup between Gordon Central and Dade County. The difference was one took advantage of them and the other didn’t.
The Lady Warriors fell 6-0 at home to Dade County despite several innings that got off to a promising start with runners on base. Dade County, on the other hand, produced runs with several timely hits when they had runners on base was able to use that as a recipe for a victory along with strong situational pitching and defense.
Gordon Central coach Sara Broom said her team wasn’t able to seize the moment when they had chances to put runs on the board and that turned into momentum the other way for Dade County.
“We left a ton of runners on today,” said Broom. “At some point, someone has to step up in those situations, show some mental toughness and get a big hit. We need someone to take a leadership role and want to be the person in those situations to make something positive happen at the plate.”
In total, the Lady Warriors (5-6, 1-3 in 7-AA) left 11 runners on base, including not capitalizing on bases-loaded, one-out situations both the second and fifth innings. They also had first and second with one out in the fourth and were unable to push a run across.
After the teams went through the first two innings scoreless, Dade County (4-6, 3-1 in 7-AA) got on the board in the third on an RBI-single by Michaela Massey. The Lady Wolverines’ biggest inning came in the fifth when they scored three runs thanks to a run on an error, another RBI-single from Massey and an RBI-double from Megan Schauer.
Dade County completed the scoring with two more insurance runs in the seventh as Massey came through for a third time in the contest with an RBI-triple. Molly Linder added the final run on a sacrifice fly. Massey finished the game going 3-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs, and Jasmine Crabtree also had a big day with a perfect 4-for-4 effort at the plate, including a double, two runs scored and a stolen base. Leadoff hitter Zoie Moore reached base twice on walks and scored both times.
Morgan Frank took the loss in the circle for the Lady Warriors despite some solid work to keep her team in the game for much of the afternoon. She finished going seven innings and allowing six runs (five earned) on nine hits while striking out four.
“Morgan kept us in it and pitched well today despite the score, and our defense played well behind her,” said Broom. “We had several times when the momentum from our defense and pitching should’ve carried over into hitting, but we didn’t capitalize on it. We need someone to have a little more intensity and effort and find a way to get the job done at the plate.”
Multiple Lady Warriors had solid offensive days despite the shutout as Javan Vineyard and Kaleigh Rogers each having two hits. Vineyard had a double amongst her knocks, and Marissa Self also had a double. Cara Crump, Jada Jaco and Frank added a hit apiece, and Sarah Crowder, Sam Jordan and Montana Slaughter each reached on a walk in the game.
Moore got the win for Dade County in the circle as she made some big pitches to get out of multiple jams. She went seven innings for the complete-game shutout and allowed eight hits and three walks while striking out six.
Gordon Central has hit a bit of a slide recently, losing five of six after starting the season 4-1. Broom said her team just needs to continue having confidence and trying to improve to turn things around.
“We need to start believing in ourselves,” said Broom. “When we get into those run-scoring situations, we need to figure out how to make things happen and get them in. Some of our kids get down on themselves when they get a strike or two on them in an at-bat. They give you three strikes for a reason. You just have to keep believing you can get a hit and find a way to make it happen. I think we can do it, but we’ve got to continue to get better.”
The Lady Warriors are back home on Thursday for another Region 7-AA contest against Chattooga at 5 p.m.