Lady Antlers claim Area title, down Lobos 9-6 - Sports

Lady Antlers claim Area title, down Lobos 9-6

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Posted: Sunday, May 5, 2019 10:54 am

DEVINE – Tivy's Lady Antlers survived a mid-inning scare from the Uvalde Lobos on Saturday afternoon at Arabian Field in Devine and took a 9-6 win to advance to the regional quarterfinals of the Class 5A softball playoffs.

Saturday's game was the decider between the two teams that had their wins at the other's home field ... Tivy last Tuesday, Uvalde on Thursday in Kerrville.

The Lobos, however, were following their most recent script when they jumped in front 2-0 after half of the first inning with three singles, and two walks. In fact Uvalde had loaded bases and were threatening more before the third out was made by Lexi Callcott on a ground ball to second base.

Tivy wasted little time taking control in the second inning when the Lady Antlers sent all nine batters to the plate, parlaying that to a 4-2 lead which Tivy never relinquished.

Amber Pintsch scored first when Alyssa Hickman singled. Callcott followed by crossing the plate on a passed ball. Courtesy runner Cayla Wilson put Tivy up 3-2 when she also took advantage of a passed ball by the Uvalde catcher. Campbell Grona singled in Hannah Delgado for the fourth run before Uvalde made the first of three pitching changes.

Uvalde answered with a run in the second inning to make the score 4-3, but Tivy had answers of its own by scoring three with two outs and going ahead 7-3.

Marissa Medina reached on a fielder's choice ground ball, Alyssa Hickman walked and Delgado belted a three-run dinger to bring in Medina, courtesy runner Wilson, and Delgado.

Uvalde managed to load the bases in the third, but starting pitcher Kaitlyn Secor forced a ground ball to get out of the inning unscathed.

In the fourth inning, however, the Lobos bookended back-to-back singles and moved to within 7-5 before two outs were notched. At that point, it looked like the Lady Antlers would have a little space left to breathe in, but one more single by Uvalde brought in another run and at 7-6.

Tivy added one run in the fifth inning when Liz Twiss crossed the plate, upping the Lady Antlers' lead to 8-6.

Secor was in a rhythm in the sixth when she sat down Uvalde in order. Medina then stepped up with a single, stole second and scored on a single by Degado.

Secor got the first two Lobos out to start the seventh, before back-to-back doubles gave Uvalde cause for hope and Tivy some alarm. Medina came in to throw to one batter and she got a strikeout, needing only five pitches to do so and end the game.

"It was resilience that helped get us through this game, because everybody can play in this round of the playoffs and it becomes a case of not letting things snowball on you," said Tivy head coach Jeremy Hickman. "Kaitlyn had all of her pitches working today and she was pounding the zone. She never really let them to get into any kind of rhythm with their bats. They had some fluke hits, but she did a great job."

Hickman also praised Medina's effort to end the game.

"And Marissa responded well in a crucial pressure situation when she came in to face a batter who doubled off her the game before," Hickman said. "We told 'Marissa you got this batter.'"

Delgado wound up leading Tivy's 13-hits attack with three, while Pintsch, Callcott, and Grona all rattled off two. Medina, Hickman, Lexi Perez, and Paige Melcher all came up with one each. In the runs scored department, Wilson, Delgado, and Medina scored twice. Pintsch, Callcott, and Twiss had the remaining runs for Tivy. Runs batted in were topped off by four from Delgado, and one each by Callcott, Hickman, and Grona.

The hitting attack helped support starting pitcher Secor, who lasted six and two thirds innings in which she struck out four, walked two, and did allow 10 hits. Only three of Uvalde's runs were of the earned variety. Secor's pitching forced the Lobos into nine ground outs, and six flyball outs.

With the win, Tivy (25-11-2) advances to the regional quarterfinals for the first time since 2001, and will face former district rival Dripping Springs at 7 p.m. Friday at St. Mary's University in San Antonio in a one game matchup.

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