For Cartersville, it was a matter of finding a way to win after losing game one and falling behind 5-1 in the second contest.
After losing 2-0 to Creekview in the first game of a best-of-three series, Woodland came back to win the second game by a score of 9-6 Wednesday in Canton to force a game three.
“I just told them they were a whole different team that second game, and whatever they did, they need to do that tomorrow,” head coach Colman Roberts said after the game. “They hit all their pitchers there that second game, so we just have to have that same mindset tomorrow.”
After getting shut out the first game while producing just four hits, Woodland scored nine runs on 12 hits in the second game.
Creekview used three different pitchers in the second contest, including the pitcher who was in the circle the entire first game. None of them were able to slow down the Lady Wildcats’ offense.
A players’ meeting between the games may have sparked the bats, according to Roberts.
“The girls said something before we played,” he said. “They had a little meeting and, whatever they said worked.”
“First of all, hitting,” center fielder Bailey Roberts said of what was discussed during the meeting. “Like, get up in the dugout, pick each other up and make productive outs.
“We said, ‘We got to pick it up,’ and we did pick it up.”
Woodland came out in the first inning and immediately started hitting Creekview’s second pitcher. The first four batters in the Lady Wildcats’ lineup each had a hit and totaled five hits in the inning, one more than they had the entire first game.
“The pitcher in the second game threw hard, but we’ve faced her a lot,” Colman Roberts said.
Bailey Roberts drove home the first run of the game with a line drive triple down the right-field line to score Ashley Jordan. Brooke Rogers then drove home Roberts with a single. Bridgett Hampton followed suit with a line drive double, which allowed Kereston Franklin to drive in a run as the next batter.
As a result, Woodland had a 3-1 lead after the first inning.
However, Creekview scored two runs in the second inning, to go along with its one run in the first, and tied the game at three apiece.
The Lady Wildcats would again get the bats going in the fourth inning when Darby Cagle and Brandee Godfrey started the inning with singles. Roberts then delivered with her second RBI of the game on a line drive single to bring in Cagle. Godfree also scored as the throw to catch her at third base hit her in the back and trickled away allowing the fifth run of the game to score.
“I just got up there and was like, ‘I’m not getting out,’” Roberts said.
After a wild pitch scored Keri Cagle, Rogers followed Roberts with a sacrifice fly to give Woodland a 7-3 lead.
Woodland would score two more runs in the fifth to put the game out of reach when Franklin tripled to lead off the frame and Sydney Hodorff followed with an opposite-way home run to right field to make the score 9-3.
Each batter in the lineup reached base for Woodland in the second game and eight had hits. Hampton, Rogers, Darby Cagle and Roberts each had two in the game.
Creekview scored three runs in the seventh inning, but the game was already out of hand.
Rogers pitched well both games despite throwing every inning in each. In the second game, her fourth-inning strikeout, with a runner on third base and just one out, kept the game tied before Woodland’s fourth-inning rally.
“She pitched well. I think she got a little tired at the end there,” Roberts said. “I think she threw like 87 pitches the first game and maybe the same in the second game.”
The two teams will meet back at Creekview High today to see who will advance to the next round and whose season will be over.
“We all want to win,” Bailey Roberts said. “I think we’re ready for it.”
Canes never quit
For Cartersville, it was a matter of never quitting, no matter how bad things looked.
And they certainly looked bad for the Lady Purple Hurricanes after they lost their first game to East Hall and trailed 5-1 after the top of the fourth inning was completed.
But things brightened suddenly in the bottom of the frame, when Kennedy Bailey hit a three-run shot that plated Mallory Jackson and Hunter Irvin. Two more runs crossed the plate and Cartersville led East Hall, 6-5.
But Cartersville wasn’t through rearranging the scoreboard pecking order as Annalyn Yantis then hit a solo home run and Irvin singled to score Brittany Huth and Maddie Geiger in the fifth inning, as the Lady Canes took the lead with a vengeance.
East Hall tacked on a run in the sixth to close out scoring with Cartersville on the right side of a 9-6 total in a game that saw four lead changes.
Head coach Rick Holsomback called the second game “a phenomenal” win.
“The girls never quit,” he said. “They fought their hearts out.
“We battled through all kinds of adversity but we persevered when they could easily have folded.”
Yantis, who picked up the win in game two, even became something of a power hitter in the fifth inning when there was a need.
“Annalyn hit her first home run ever,” Holsomback noted.
Yantis took the loss in the first game, allowing just one run in Cartersville’s 2-1 loss to East Hall.
Jackson provided most of the offensive muscle, reaching base twice, including a fourth-inning homer, for Cartersville in that game, which saw Yantis allow one run while pitching 7 and 2/3 innings and scattering seven hits.
Natalie Winters was credited with the victory for East Hall, which had answered Jackson’s home run in the bottom of the fourth.
The Lady Vikings claimed the victory with a solo home run by Kali Turner in the bottom of the eighth.
Holsomback said the Lady Canes will learn around noon if the two teams will play late today. He said Cartersville needs to stay in its present state of mind.
“We just have to be mentally strong,” he said. “We can’t give up. We have to capitalize on our opportunities.”