By NEMS Daily Journal
HATLEY – Two-and-a-half hours after it started, Hamilton is 3-0 in Division 3-2A play.
With two six-run leads dissolved, Hamilton scored its most important run in the first extra inning of a 12-11 road win Tuesday night against Monroe County rival Hatley. International rules in play, Addie Thompson started the inning at second base.
The eighth grader had been thrown out in the seventh inning, but scored the game-winner when senior teammate Chauncia Willis ripped an RBI double down the third base line.
“Anytime we play them, we know it’s going to be a big game,” said Hamilton coach Jason Cobb. “They kept fighting and clawing and pulled back even. That’s a sign of a good ballclub.”
It didn’t come without drama. In the bottom of the eighth, Hatley put Makayla Andrews on second base. Lesley Hudson, who took the loss, reached on an error but was thrown out a moment later. Courtney Roberts walked and with runners at the corners, winning pitcher Lyndsey Williams fielded Jamelle Vance’s bunt and threw Andrews out at the plate. Williams then got Taylor Barrett to ground back to her for the final out.
Hatley (13-3, 3-1) had taken a 2-0 lead in the first inning, on the first of five Hamilton errors and an RBI single from Mallory Ashcraft.
Hamilton scored four times in the second, two on two of Hatley’s five errors and two on a two-run single from Caitlyn Atkins. Hamilton went ahead 8-2 in the fourth on starting pitcher Shelby Savage’s sac fly and another Hatley error.
“It’s frustrating, but we fought back and made a real good game out of it,” Hatley coach Chris George said. “I was playing for the win (in the eighth). I wasn’t playing for the tie.”
Hatley cut the lead to 8-5 in the fifth before Savage’s inside-the-park home run put the Lady Lions (10-8) ahead 11-5. Hatley tied the game in the sixth with six runs, on RBI singles from Ashcraft and Amber Fulton and knotted the game when Barrett reached on a two-out error that cleared loaded bases.
Cobb said the win is even bigger on the road, as the two meet again in Hamilton a week later.
“It’s huge to get it on their field and we’ve got another big one Thursday night at East Webster,” he said. “If we can get both of them on the road, that will be huge.”