The Cass softball team bounced back from its worst loss of the season to close out the week with a key Region 7-AAAAA home win Saturday over Blessed Trinity. After falling behind 3-0 in the top of the …
The Cass softball team bounced back from its worst loss of the season to close out the week with a key Region 7-AAAAA home win Saturday over Blessed Trinity.
After falling behind 3-0 in the top of the first inning, the host Colonels pretty much dominated the rest of the way, earning an 8-4 victory to match the Titans with a 3-3 region record.
It was a total team effort with eight of the nine Cass hitters reaching safely. Five of them were on base multiple times, as the team scored in each of their final four turns at bat, including a four-run third inning.
"When the top of the lineup provides, that's great, but when the bottom does, that's huge," Colonels head coach Taylor Washington said. "I thought we had both sides of it today. Everybody produced."
The top of the order certainly did its part.
Alexis Woods and Eryn Lee — the first two batters in the lineup — each went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI. Two of Woods' hits were triples. Woods was also hit by a pitch, and Lee added a walk to her line.
The two combined for arguably the biggest play of the game in the bottom of the fourth inning after Blessed Trinity had just tied the game 4-4 in the top of the frame. Woods hit a one-out triple, and Lee followed with a perfect bunt that allowed her teammate to slide in safely for the go-ahead run.
Defensively, Woods recorded an incredible 10 putouts from her shortstop position. The sophomore is more used to playing second base, doing so for her travel team and having played the position last season for the Colonels (7-4 overall).
"She's adjusted to shortstop so great this year," Washington said of Woods. "She's taken on that role and excelled."
A few days after downing rival Cartersville with a three-run double to break a sixth-inning tie, Haley Smith had another great day at the plate. The senior twice came up with the bases loaded, recording two hits and three RBIs in those two plate appearances. One of the hits — a two-run knock — gave Cass a 4-3 edge, and the other extended the team's lead to 6-4.
"We practice situational hitting a lot — pretty much every day in practice," Washington said. "They're really starting to buy into that, and it's showing on the field. Haley Smith did a great job with it."
Elsewhere offensively, Ansley Hight tripled, walked and scored twice. Kimberly Allen and Kylee Hembree both added one hit.
Kendyl Hardin didn't have a hit but picked up two RBIs. Hardin hit the ball hard in each of her first three at-bats. Scratch that, Hardin was hit hard by the ball in each of her first three at-bats. One of those HBPs came with the bases loaded, and the senior then added a sacrifice fly to cap the scoring.
Hembree went the distance in the circle. It looked as though it might be a long day for the junior when she gave up a trio of hits, including a three-run homer in the opening inning.
However, Hembree managed to escape jams the rest of the way, stranding 10 total baserunners. Her final line wasn't flawless, with seven hits and six walks allowed, but she made the pitches she needed to work out of trouble.
"Kylee was huge," Washington said. "They got up 3-0 on us in the first inning, and she came out, battled back and kept us in the game."
Saturday provided a much-needed bounce back for the Colonels. Following a doubleheader split Wednesday with Cartersville, Cass suffered an 11-0, five-inning defeat Thursday against Calhoun.
The upcoming week will offer a chance to keep the good times rolling, with a doubleheader Tuesday against the region's last-place team Hiram, and a challenge, as Woodland visits Thursday for one game.
"I felt like we hadn't played like ourselves this week," Washington said. "To finish off today like that, I feel good going into next week. We needed that win."