By R. Alan Richardson
It was an up-and-down week for the Lady Diamond Dogs. After putting their first three games in the win column over East Jackson, Jasper County (Monticello), and Alcovy, they dropped a pair Friday to Hart County and Eastside to move to 3-2 on the young season.
Coach Jason McBay hit a major milestone in his career after notching win number 200 after his team defeated Alcovy. He weighed in on his career and the accomplishment saying, “After nine years, two high schools, 34 seniors, 27 assistant coaches, one super supportive wife, and now 200 wins, I am so blessed to have coached so many talented players over the years. Also, I could not be where I am without the 27 men and women who worked hard to support me and our teams as assistant coaches. I can’t say enough about my #1 fan Traci Barnes McBay. She once asked someone to hold her baby (Harlin) so she could defend my/our honor. She reminds me every day to stay balanced, to rest, and to remember that I have three baby girls that love me win, lose, or draw. Thank you to everyone who has had a part in these 200 wins – the ADs, the parents, the booster club members, the assistant coaches, the coaches’ families, and most of all the players. Let’s go get some more.”
Morgan came out strong against Alcovy scoring three runs in the first inning. Anna Kate Hill led the inning off with a screamer between third and short, moved to second on a passed ball, and scored on an error off the bat of Avery Kinnett. Kinnett later scored on back-to-back singles by Brian Langford and Ryan Henderson. Langford scored the third run off Henderson’s rip down the right field line. This one looked to be easy, but the Lady Wildcats battled throughout the afternoon to keep things close. They got a run in the top of the second, but MOCO answered with two more of their own to bring the score to a comfortable 5-1 lead.
Amelia Anderson got things going in the second stanza with a bunt single and stole second. She crossed home after a bunt single off the bat of Hill. Hill scored her second run of the contest after Alcovy committed two successive errors. Leah Spain, who reached first on an error, stole second and scored on the third error of the inning to give the Lady Dogs the four-run cushion.
Uncharacteristic defensive miscues on the part of Morgan helped Alcovy push three runs across the plate in the third to move the Wildcats closer at 5-4 before the Dogs inched ahead 6-4 in the bottom of the third. That run was again the result of misplays on the part of Alcovy. After three innings of play, Morgan held a slim 6-4 advantage.
The visitors pulled to within 6-5 in the top of the fourth before Morgan broke the game open with three runs in the fifth inning and another in the sixth for a final tally of 10-5. With one out in the fifth it was Spain who singled to give MOCO a baserunner. An error was followed by a single from Anderson and another by Hill to score Spain, Emma Garrison, and Anderson. The sixth inning run was the result of pitcher Emma Garner reaching first on an error and later scoring after two wild pitches.
Friday night’s contests weren’t close. It was a night to forget for McBay’s troops. The Coach commented about Friday’s contests saying, “We are wearing all black at practice Monday. We’re going to have a funeral where we bury those two losses from Friday night. One ball will be for the softball related things we need to forget and never let happen again. The other ball will be for general obstacles we need to bury and get over (fear, being timid, making excuses).”
Morgan’s next outing comes Aug. 20 at home vs. Hephzibah. The 4-AAA matchup will be the second of two Region games for the Lady Dogs this week. They played Thomson this past Tuesday. Results were unavailable at press time.