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Ergle helps Lady Bobcats edge Red Bay for regional berth

Emma Ergle took a shutout into the sixth inning on Thursday and finished with seven strikeouts in a complete game as Phil Campbell wrapped up a second straight regional berth with a 4-1 win over rival Red Bay at the Class 2A, Area 14 tournament in Vernon.

Olivia Knight knocked in Abby Davis twice for the Lady Bobcats (23-11), and Ergle (9-3) took care of the rest in the circle. The eighth-grader retired 11 batters in a row at one point and worked out of trouble in the sixth and the seventh to finish off the win and punch Phil Campbell's ticket to the North Regional Tournament in Huntsville.

Lila Blackburn took the loss for Red Bay but pitched well, striking out 11 batters in a complete game. She gave up three earned runs on six hits and walked four.

Ergle pitched around a one-out double by Blackburn in the bottom of the first, and the Lady Bobcats grabbed an early lead in the top of the second. Davis singled with two outs, stole second and scored on Knight's double to center to make it 1-0.

Ergle struck out the side in the bottom of the second, and Phil Campbell took advantage of two Red Bay errors to add a run in the top of the third. Ergle worked around an error in the bottom of the inning, striking out two and retiring Blackburn on a fly ball to right.

Davis singled again with one out in the top of the fourth, stole second, stole third and scored on an infield hit by Knight to make it 3-0. Ergle had set down 11 straight batters and was cruising in the bottom of the sixth when Blackburn singled for her second hit. She scored on a single by Annaliese Rogers, getting Red Bay on the board and cutting the lead to 3-1.

Another hit put the tying run on base, but Ergle ended the threat with a strikeout.

The Lady Bobcats got that run back in the top of the seventh, loading the bases on two walks and a single by Cypress Quinn. Kallie Allen walked to force in a run and make it 4-1.

Ergle pitched around a hit batter and a single in the bottom of the seventh, recording the final out with the tying run at the plate. She allowed one earned run on five hits in seven innings, walking none and throwing 63 of her 93 pitches for strikes. She got seven groundball outs and seven flyball outs to go along with her seven K's.

Davis was 2-for-4 with two runs and three stolen bases, and Knight went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two steals. Leeah Jackson had a double, and Kaci Harris stole two bases and scored a run.

In previous action:

Lamar County 9 Phil Campbell 2

The top-seeded Lady Bulldogs broke up a tie game earlier on Thursday with seven runs over the final three innings to earn a spot in the championship game and a regional berth.

Phil Campbell scored twice in the bottom of the first to take an early lead. Darby Elliott singled with one out, stole second and scored on a base hit by Leeah Jackson. Katie Thomas added an RBI single to put the Lady Bobcats on top 2-1.

Seventh-grader Chesney Hamby made the lead hold up until the top of the fourth when Lamar County scored the tying run. The Lady Bulldogs took advantage of three hits and three Phil Campbell errors in the top of the fifth to score three runs and take a 5-2 lead.

Hamby pitched a complete game, allowing nine runs (none earned) on 11 hits in seven innings. She struck out two and walked one.

Elliott was 2-for-3 with a run, and Olivia Knight also went 2-for-3 and stole a base. Jackson was 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run. Thomas, Cypress Quinn and Kenner Scott each had one hit.

Phil Campbell and Lamar County were playing later on Thursday in the area finals. Details on that game were not available at press time.

 

 

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