CHAPMANVILLE — If you like an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel, then Friday night’s sectional softball game between Scott and Chapmanville would have been to your liking.
The goose eggs piled up inning after inning and going into the last inning.
But in the end, it was Tatum Halley and the Scott Lady Hawks who prevailed 1-0 over host Chapmanville in the Class AA Region 4 Section 2 winner’s bracket final at Chapmanville Regional High School’s Ronnie Ooten Field.
Halley pitched the complete game shutout, and Scott’s Natalie Green supplied the heroics in the bottom of the seventh with the game-winning single.
The win put top-seed Scott (15-6) in Monday night’s sectional championship game, where the Lady Hawks were set to square off with the survivor of the weekend elimination games between Chapmanville, Logan and Wayne.
Scott is in the driver’s seat and would have to be beaten twice.
One more win and the Lady Hawks are sectional champions for the first time in over a decade.
It was an all-around good ballgame,” Scott coach Eric Harper said. “It’s going to be a tough game whether it’s Wayne, Logan or Chapmanville,” Harper said. “These sectionals are not easy. I’ve had these 10 girls and we’ve been through a lot of adversity this year. But I could not have asked for anything better. They love to play ball.”
Halley was spot on in Friday’s game, going the full seven innings and allowing no runs while scattering six hits. She struck out eight and walked none.
Sierra Cook took the loss within the circle for Chapmanville. She allowed one run on five hits with six strikeouts and only one walk.
Both sides pitched well,” Harper said. “The girl from Chapmanville pitched really well. I really only have one pitcher on this team out of the 10 players. The other girl who pitches hasn’t really pitched since she was 10 years old. The other girl who pitched quit on me, so that just adds to our story. Tatum works hard at it. She’s tough.”
Scoreless through six innings, Scott won in dramatic fashion in the bottom of the seventh.
Kaleigh Ellis got things started with a slap single past Chapmanville third baseman Ashleigh Mahon and into left field.
Kirsten Arthur followed with a double to left field, putting runners at second and third with one out.
Green, just a freshman and Scott’s starting catcher, then came up with the game winner, as she laced an RBI single to left center, scoring Ellis from third base and putting the Lady Hawks into Monday’s championship game.
I told them before that inning that we had to put pressure on them and had to so something,” Harper said. “Green stepped up and got that big hit for us. She’s just a freshman. She’s played tough for me all year. She got hit in the head earlier in the game.”
It was a tough-luck loss for Chapmanville, which dropped to 8-14 on the season and 1-1 in the double-elimination sectionals. It was the second time this season CRHS has lost to Scott this season by one run. The Lady Hawks had defeated the Lady Tigers 3-2 back on April 12 in the season opener on the road.
I figured that one run would do it,” veteran Chapmanville coach Ronnie Ooten said. “We just didn’t hit the ball when we needed hits. They put their hits together and we didn’t. Both teams played well. It was a super ballgame.”
The sixth inning had its moments of drama.
In the top of the sixth, still in a scoreless tie, Cook ripped a ball into the outfield for a base hit.
Ooten, also the first-base coach, waved her on to second, but she was gunned down going for a double. Halley then got Erin Adkins to gr ound out, ending the inning.
I should have held Sierra up, but I didn’t,” Ooten said. “We don’t have a lot of speed.”
In the bottom of the sixth, Chapmanville right fielder Mattie Williams robbed Jayden Elkins of a potential double or maybe even a triple as she ranged deep to the warning track and lunged high with her glove to take away an extra base hit.
Delani Adkins then flew out to left, ending the inning and taking the game into the seventh in a scoreless tie.
It’s hard to get them over her head and she made a super super catch,” Ooten said. “That kept us alive.”
Elkins added a double for Scott. Jakayla Gaiter had a single.
Adkins was 2-for-3 to lead CRHS. Baylee Belcher, Claire Dingess and Emma Muncy added hits for the Lady Tigers.
CRHS had other scoring opportunities in the second and third innings.
In the second, the Lady Tigers had two runners on but both were stranded.
In the third, Dingess singled and was bunted over to third after successive sacrifice bunts by Muncy and Sidnee Varney but was left there as Mahon popped out to second base.
Scott put two runners aboard in the bottom of the fifth with a walk and Gaiter’s single but Halley popped up to the mound to end the threat.
The Lady Hawks last won a sectional title in 2008 as Scott upset then defending Class AA state champion Chapmanville and All-State pitcher Andi Williamson, 8-6, in the championship game at Logan.
It’s been a long time. Over 10 years I think,” Harper said. “But if it happens, we’ll take it.”
Chapmanville is still alive but must take care of business in Saturday’s elimination game.
It’s been a rare rebuilding year for the youthful Lady Tigers, who did not play at all last year, nor did any team. Chapmanville’s last losing season was a 15-17 campaign back in 2012.
We’re not dead yet and we have to come back tomorrow,” Ooten said. “But these kids have just about called it quits. We’ve had a horrible year because we had kids who were quarantined. Then some got quarantined early in the year for 10 days because of four or five of them at a birthday party. Then we got quarantined for another 10 days after the prom. Then we tried to play a lot of makeup games and pushed them all together and six of them were away.”