Lady Urchins advance to 2A North Championship
by Dennis Clayton
East Union duplicated their hit total in their round two playoff series against Riverside on Saturday as they pounded out 15 hits during each game. The Lady Urchins now advance to the 2A North Championship on Tuesday in a matchup with Baldwyn.
Game one of the series was marred by countless walks as the teams combined for a total of 22 free passes. Riverside collected more walks than hits. East Union took an early 3-1 lead in the first as Tianna Castillo doubled and drove in two runs and Callie Frazier added an RBI single.
Riverside came back in the fifth to go ahead 5-4 and added another run in the top of the sixth to lead 6-4. East Union came back in the bottom half of the inning to tie as Mallory Roberts tripled, driving in Kallie Roberts and Claudia Hill and the score was knotted 6-6.
Riverside went ahead in the top of the seventh as they pieced together two walks and four singles to manufacture three runs and led 9-6 going into the bottom of the seventh. The Lady Urchins sent nine batters to the plate and came back to tie to force extra innings. Key hits were Stephanie Hardy's RBI single and Rebecca Sheffield's two RBI double to notch the tie.
In the eighth, Riverside managed to get a walk, but could do no further damage. Sallie Pannell led off the East Union eighth with a walk. Savannah Alexander followed her with a two run walk-off homer to win the contest for the Lady Urchins 11-9.
East Union started strong and finished strong in game two as they won 13-2 to clinch the series. The Lady Urchins got on the board in the top of the second as Katie Hunt led off the inning with a single. Tianno Castillo followed and belted a two run homer to stake the Lady urchins to a 2-0 lead. East Union plated two more runs in the inning as Mallory Roberts singled and drove in Rebecca Sheffield and Kallie Roberts to up the lead to 4-0.
East Union scored two more in the top of the third as Castillo added another RBI and Sheffield’s sacrifice fly plated a run to raise the score to 6-0.
Riverside scored in the bottom of the fourth to make the score 6-1. East Union’s bats really came alive in the top of the fifth as they sent 12 batters to the plate and proceeded to pound riverside pitching for seven hits. An error and two singles loaded the bases for the Lady Urchins’ Sheffield and she did not disappoint as she launched a grand slam home over the right center fence.
Savannah Alexander later had an RBI single and Castillo, who lacked a triple to hit for the cycle in the game, doubled and drove in the team’s final two runs. East Union had the 13-2 victory in game two and clinched the series 2-0. East Union is now 24-7 on the year and this is their first trip to the North Championship in school history.
About Dennis ClaytonI cover high school sports in Union County and occasionally contribute sports articles to sister community newspapers of Journal Inc. Follow me on Twitter: @denclayton for scores and updates on our local high school teams.
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