McClain’s Lady Tigers broke a 6-6 tie in the bottom of the seventh inning as Payton Smith drove in Kaylee Stevenson with a sacrifice bunt. Stevenson paused between third and home as she waited for the Lady Panthers to throw to first base to get the out and then sprinted and slid into home plate to secure the win for the McClain Ladies.
Beckley Smith led the Lady Tigers on the offensive end with two home runs in the game and three RBI. B. Smith’s first home run was a two run blast in the bottom of the first inning that gave the Lady Tigers their first lead of the night.
Kyla Burchett pitched a complete game for McClain to pick up the win. Burchett struck out one batter in the game and allowed six run over the course of seven innings of work.
The Lady Panthers scored all six of their runs in the first four innings of the game including home runs in back to back plate appearances for the Miami Trace seven hole hitter. Miami Trace held a 6-4 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth inning.
In the bottom of the sixth inning the Lady Tigers scored two runs to tie the game. Kalli Anderson scored the first after reaching on a single of her own and scored on a single by Kendall Pollard. Pollard scored the second run on a passed ball to tie the game.
Burchett retired the top of the Lady Panthers order to put the Lady Tigers in position to win the game in the bottom of the seventh.
Lady Tigers head coach Ed Bolender reflected on the final play after the game.
“They called a timeout and gave me a second to get my thoughts together and actually caoch Smith is the one who brought up the idea of the bunt in that situation. We did it and Kaylee did an excellent job of getting a good break and reading the throw to first base,” said Bolender.
The Tigers baseball team did not fare as well as the softball team as they suffered a 17-5 defeat at the hands of the Miami Trace boys.
McClain got off to a rough start as the Panthers hung five runs on them in the first inning as Tigers starter John Salyers struggled with control as he walked two batters and hit another.
The Tigers put up four runs of their own in the bottom of the first inning as the first four batters for McClain; Eric Anderson, Garrison Banks, John Salyers and Cody Pollock all crossed the plate in the inning. The Tigers added their fifth run in the bottom of the third inning.
The Panthers put the game on ice in the top of the fourth inning as they plated eight runs in the inning and 11 different players made a plate appearance against the McClain pitching staff.
Miami Trace added four more runs in the top of the fifth to provide the final margin of victory.
McClain boys head coach Rich Bunner talked about the inability of his pitchers to throw strikes in the game.
“We just have to throw strikes. We have one of the best defensive teams around. We hit the ball like crazy. It is just a matter ofputting the ball over the plate and trusting our defense. We didn’t do that tonight, I think we had upwards of 15 walks tonight,” said Bunner.
Reach Ryan Applegate at 937-402-2572, or on Twitter @RCApplegate89.