Tuesday, March 20, 2012

SPORTS >> Lady Badgers finish hectic week

Leader sports editor

The Beebe Lady Badgers had a busy ending to last week, playing five games in three days. The rapid succession of games began with a doubleheader against Greene County Tech on Thursday to open conference play. The Lady Badgers swept the series, winning game one 4-3 and taking game two 2-0.

Beebe has a youth-laden roster, with as many as six freshmen filling the starting lineup on a given night. In game one against Greene County Tech, freshman Ellie Reaves started and got the win on the mound. The Lady Badgers were down 3-2 going into the bottom of the last inning before pulling out the victory.

Junior Annlee Glass got the win on the mound in game two, starting and throwing four innings. She gave up just two hits before yielding to Reaves for the remainder of the shutout win.

Beebe got a tough draw for the first round of the Tournament of Champions at Burns Park in North Little Rock. The Lady Badgers faced tournament host NLRHS and lost 9-2 to fall to the consolation bracket.

There they met defending class 4A champion Atkins in the second round on Saturday morning. The Lady Red Devils lost 12-3 to defending 6A champion Searcy in the first round. Things started poorly for Beebe against Atkins. The Lady Red Devils scored two runs in the first inning to grab an early lead. After that, Glass settled in adn took control.

The Lady Badgers got things going in the top of the second when cleanup hitter Sarah White led off with a single. Five-hole hitter Lannie Reaves reached on an error at shortstop that put runners on the corners.

White then scored on a wild pitch and Lannie Reaves scored when Megan Davlin hit a sacrifice grounder for an RBI. Atkins didn’t get another hit until the final inning, but Beebe continued to put runs across the plate.

The Lady Badgers added a run in third on another wild pitch. Two-hole hitter Calah Hill reached on a bunt single and moved to second on another bunt single by Brittany Brittany Gentry. White then laid down a sacrifice bunt that moved the runners up, setting up the score that gave Beebe a 3-2 lead.

The fourth inning was the only inning after the first in which the Lady Badgers failed to score, but they added two more in the fifth.

With one out, leadoff hitter Madelyn Poe singled to centerfield and Hill followed with an infield single. Poe scored on an error at second base and Hill scored on an RBI single by White. That made it 5-2, but Atkins cut into that margin in the bottom of the same inning.

Lady Devil leadoff hitter Emily Ward walked with two outs and scored one batter later on an error at second base.

Then came Beebe’s big inning. The Lady Badgers started a five-run rally when eight-hole hitter Courtney Caldwell walked and stole second base. Glass singled to drive the run home, bringing Beebe back to the top of the order.

Poe got a bunt single and Hill loaded the bases when Atkins tried to get the lead runner at third and failed on Hill’s grounder back to the pitcher. Gentry drove in one run with an infield single to third base, and a throwing error on the play allowed another run to score. Lannie Reaves got the final RBI with a single to left field.

Beebe moved into the final of the consolation bracket to face the Hope Bobcats and lost 2-1 in the bottom of the last inning. Hope pitcher Jamie Davlin roped a line drive to deep centerfield to drive in the game-winning run.

The weekend’s games left Beebe with an overall record of 6-4 and a 2-0 conference mark.