Belgreen, Tharptown end record-setting softball seasons
The Belgreen and Tharptown softball teams saw their seasons come to end in the first round of the Class 1A state playoffs Monday but both enjoyed record-setting seasons this year.
Both teams each advanced to the fast-pitch state playoffs for the first time in school history. The Lady Bulldogs finished second in Area 16 to Waterloo, while the Lady Wildcats (20-13) won the school's first varsity county championship and was second in Area 15 to Athens Bible.
Woodville 3, 12
Belgreen 2, 0
WOODVILLE – Area 14 champion Woodville escaped with a 3-2 win in Game 1 and used a nine-run seventh inning in the second game to sweep Belgreen Monday in the first round of the Class 1A state playoffs.
In the opener, Deborah Billingham singled and scored on a throwing error in the top of the first inning and Amber Smith doubled and scored off a double from Martha Billingham to put Belgreen ahead 2-1 after five innings. But Woodville tied the game on an unearned run in the bottom of the sixth and pushed across the winning run in the eighth to win the first game.
Junior Martha Billingham (8-6) took the complete-game loss on the mound despite only giving up two earned runs and six hits and striking out two with one walk. The Lady Bulldogs (17-12) had six hits, including two singles from Katy Britton.
In the second game, Woodville broke open an early 3-0 lead by scoring nine runs with two outs in the seventh inning to end the series.
Sophomore Loren McVicker struck out 11 batters but allowed six walks, 10 earned runs and 12 hits to take the complete-game loss. Deborah Billingham went 2-for-3 with two singles to lead the Lady Bulldogs, who had six hits.
"We only had one senior (Emily Watts) this year, and we have the core of the team coming back next year," Belgreen coach Frank Billingham said. "This was our first winning season in fast-pitch softball, and I feel like the future is very bright and that we should be very competitive next year,"
Woodville will play at Ragland at 11 a.m. Saturday in the second round of the playoffs. The winner will advance to the state tournament May 15-16 at Lagoon Park in Mongomery.
Hackleburg 4, 11
Tharptown 2, 3
HACKLEBURG – Area 12 champion Hackleburg swept Area 15 runner-up Tharptown in the first round of the Class 1A playoffs Monday as the Lady Panthers won 4-2 in the opener and 11-3 in the second game.
Chelsea McCluskey led the Lady Wildcats (20-13) with two hits in Game 1 and Game 2, while Casey Mitchell added two hits in the opener and Jess Myrick took the loss on the mound for both games.
Hackleburg will play at Lynn at 1 p.m. Saturday in the second round of the playoffs. The winner will advance to the state tournament May 15-16 at Lagoon Park in Mongomery.