MCC falls in tourney opener
By By Richard Dark/The Meridian Star
May 18, 2001
KISSIMMEE, Fla. The Meridian Community College Lady Eagle softball team finds itself in a familiar position once again after falling 6-1 to the St. Louis Meramec Magic in the first game of the NJCAA Fastpitch National Championship Tournament.
Just like last season, MCC will have to win the night game to stave off elimination.
A four-run frame in the bottom of the fourth doomed MCC's chances against a speedy Magic team that played small ball to perfection.
The Lady Eagles fell into the loser's bracket and will have to battle out of it against Seminole (Okla.) CC, who earlier lost to Midland (Tex.) 1-0.
With the score knotted at one, the Magic started things off with a standup double by Jill Weiss. Joy Puricelli then flew out.
But with one out, that's when things fell apart for the Lady Eagles. They misplayed two straight bunts to start the avalanche and Jessica Reeder's pop-up in the infield fell in between several Lady Eagles to make it 4-1.
By the time the dust had settled, the Magic had worked some, with a 5-1 lead on five hits and the Lady Eagles (39-12) seemed to know it was over.
But Eakins pointed to a baserunning mistake in the top of the fourth that put MCC on the wrong path.
Down 1-0 off a solo homer in the second by Tabatha Thurmond, MCC came to the plate intent on responding.
That's exactly what they did, as Stephanie Dixon slapped one to right. Then Faith Robinson went the opposite way to left to drive her in, but in her zeal, she overran an easy double and was tagged for the second out.
MCC had a chance to tie the game in the top of the sixth when Dreka Shumpert was hit by a pitch with two outs.
That led to two straight baseknocks by Dixon and Robinson that loaded the bases.
Shanna Blanks, who earlier barely missed hauling in the homer at the short porch, lined out to short to end the threat.
A solo homer by Glennis Donnelly in the sixth ended the scoring for the Magic (54-10).
Thurmond went 2-for-3 with a homer as did Donelly to lead the Magic who scraped out eight hits to help send Adcox (27-4) to the loss.
The Lady Eagles scattered seven hits as Ashley Schmidt got the win for the Magic.
Dixon and Robinson went 2-for-3 and Auriel Jenkins collected two hits as well.
Richard Dark is a sports writer for The Meridian Star. You can call him at 693 1551, ext. 3234 or E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.