Clarksville, TN – If Clarksville High School’s softball team is to make its first trip to the state tournament in school history it will have to be as road warriors, as the Lady Wildcats lost to Dickson County 11-2 May 15th in the Region 5-AAA finals.
Coming into the region finals, Clarksville High (34-10-1) had won eight in a row, giving up just four runs over that period, but the Lady Cougars pounded out 15 hits in scoring its 11 runs – including six of those coming in the seventh inning when CHS was down just three runs.“My hats off to Dickson, they came to play tonight,” Clarksville High coach Brian Rush said. “They played well in ever facet of the game, so we kind of ran into a little bit of a buzz saw tonight.”
The Lady Cougars (29-13) put the Lady Wildcats on the defensive early on, as their leadoff hitter Payton Grove worked a walk from Clarksville High starting pitcher Heather Norris, moved into scoring position at second base on a sacrifice, and scored on a single up the middle by Makray Odom.
It was still 1-0 heading into the top of the third inning, when Dickson County started to pull away scoring four runs on five hits.
Clarksville High was able to get the first batter of the inning out on a pop up an the infield, but that was followed by back-to-back-to-back singles by Odom, Ashley Scott and Brooklin Lee – with Lee’s single driving in Odom.
The Lady Wildcats got the next Lady Cougar out without any damage, and looked to get out of the inning giving up just the one run when shortstop Clare Grady made a diving stop on a hard hit grounder to her right side by Becca Estes.
But her flip to second base on the fielder’s choice was ruled to not be in time and the Lady Cougars had a second life with the bases loaded and two outs.
Dickson County took that second life and added two more runs, on a single by Ansley Stringfield and a final run on a single by Grove.
Clarksville High would cut into the Lady Cougars lead in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring twice on three hits.
Dickson County got the next two Lady Wildcats out, but Brooke Knight and Alyssa Reed followed with back-to-back RBI singles to make it 5-2.
Grady was the only other CHS player to record a hit in the loss.
But that was as close as the Lady Wildcats would get, with Dickson County blowing the game open with six runs in the top of the seventh inning, while defensively retiring nine straight Lady Wildcat hitters to end the game.
Despite the loss, Clarksville High advances to the sectional tournament on May 17th traveling to Ravenwood (31-5) — who beat Overton 11-0 in the Region 6-AAA finals — with a trip to the state tournament on the line.
Dickson County 11, Clarksville High 2
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Brooklin Lee and Becca Estes; Heather Norris, Brooke Knight (7) and Haley Bearden