Weather slows GSC Tournament
By By Austin Bishop/EMG regional sports director
May 1, 2004
For a while, it looked like the big winner in Friday's first-round of the Gulf South Conference Fast-Pitch Softball Tournament at the Northeast Softball Complex would be the weather.
Despite starting the eight-team, double elimination tournament two hours behind schedule and only being able to use two fields for the first four hours of play, all six scheduled for the first day were played.
West Florida and Southern Arkansas won two games each on Friday to reach today's 2 p.m. winners' bracket finals.
The action begins at 11 a.m. today with a pair of elimination games that have Alabama-Huntsville facing Valdosta State and Lincoln Memorial taking on Henderson State.
Two more elimination games will be played at 6 p.m.
First-round games on Friday saw Southern Arkansas beat Alabama-Huntsville 7-3, Delta State beat Valdosta State 8-3, Arkansas-Monticello top Lincoln Memorial 2-0 and West Florida down Henderson State 1-0.
Second-round games saw Southern Arkansas beat Delta State 5-0 and West Florida edge Arkansas-Monticello 2-1.
West Florida 2
Tabitha Hairelson ripped a two-out, two-run homer to right field in the bottom of the fifth inning to power West Florida to the one-run win in the last game of the night.
The Blossoms of UAM, the No. 1 seed from the West Division, had taken a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth when Jennifer Hickman doubled in pinch-runner Rachel Blakely.
Jackie Moore picked up the win on the mound for West Florida, striking out 12 and allowing just three hits.
Hairelson had two hits to lead UWF, while Laura Lockaby had a double for the Blossoms.
West Florida 1
Henderson State 0
Erica Olson singled in pinch-runner Jennifer Elliott in the bottom of the seventh to lead the Argonauts to the first-round win. Moore picked up the win on the mound for UWF, the No. 2 seed out of the GSC East, by striking out 10 and allowing just one walk and three hits.
The West Florida seventh began with Lindsay Warrenfeltz reaching on a walk. Elliott then pinch-ran for Warrenfeltz and advanced to second when Allison Milliman was hit by a pitch. After a pop out, Olson came through with her game-winning hit.
Holly Hughes had a double for Henderson State.
Southern Arkansas 7
Southern Arkansas scored six runs in the sixth inning to take the 7-3 win over Alabama-Huntsville on Friday.
The Riderettes put together three hits to score a single run in the fifth to go up 1-0, before stretching that to 7-0.
SAU had five hits and took advantage of three UAH errors in the big inning. The Riderettes pounded out 11 hits on the day, with Lyndsey Knight, Robyn Smith and Tisha Thompson picking up two each.
Cassie Blackwood had a double for SAU, while Ashley Potter ripped a two-bagger and drove in two runs for UAH. Rachel Hamby also had two hits for the Lady Chargers.
Delta State 8
Valdosta State 3
Valdosta State scored single runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings to take an early 3-1 lead before the Lady Statesmen exploded for seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to take the win.
Alyse Hasty had two of DSU's eight hits, while Valdosta State picked up 12 hits on the day.
DSU ended the regular season with eight straight wins. Delta State went up 1-0 in the bottom of the first when Jen Meeks executed a sacrifice bunt to score Hasty who had singled to lead off the inning.
Valdosta State tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the third Jessie Ortiz singled in Caty Murray, who singled to start the rally.
Murray had an RBI single for VSU in the fourth and Tonya Coffey doubled in Kelly Summers in the fifth.
Delta State erupted for five hits in the sixth, and that combined with two VSU errors, was enough to score seven runs.
Lincoln Memorial 0
Lindsey Kight struck out seven to lead the Blossoms to the 2-0 opening-round win over Lincoln Memorial. UAM scored on an RBI double by Laura Lockaby and then made it 2-0 in the third when Jennifer Hickman singled in Jodi Scott.