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Kelley scores winning run in eighth inning for CCHS

Published 7:07pm Friday, March 14, 2014

By Brandon Sumrall | Special to the Advertiser

A late comeback by the Chilton County Tigers varsity softball team led to extra innings against the Calera Eagles on Thursday night, with the Tigers coming away with an 11-10 victory after eight innings of play.

After a scoreless top of the first inning for Calera (4-4), errors by the Eagles led to the three runs in the bottom half of the inning for the Tigers (6-5).

Game winner: Chilton County High School’s Gabriel Kelley rounds third base on her way home for the game-winning run during Thursday night’s game against Calera.
Game winner: Chilton County High School’s Gabriel Kelley rounds third base on her way home for the game-winning run during Thursday night’s game against Calera.

The Eagles answered right back in the top of the second inning with four runs of their own.

With the bases loaded and no outs, Aubrie Smith reached base on an infield ground ball that scored Mallorie Gilbert from third. Skyler Laird took ball four to push Jennifer Townley across home plate, and Shelby Clark scored Heather Griffin and Smith with a shot back up the middle.

With a three-up, three-down inning for the CCHS batters in the bottom half of the second, the Eagles maintained a 4-3 lead.

Calera added three more runs in the top of the fourth inning.

An infield single by Shelby Clark to score Smith combined with a Charley Clark triple to score Laird and Shelby Clark gave the Eagles a 7-3 lead.

Another run by the Eagles in the top of the sixth inning put the Tigers in a five-run hole heading to the bottom of the sixth inning.

Four straight singles by the Tigers to start the inning produced a run and left the bases loaded with no outs.

Singles by Kristina Caton and Holly Watts added two more runs for the Tigers, and a Kristina Smitherman single added another.

Eleven batters and seven runs in the inning would gave the Tigers a 10-8 lead.

In the hole by two runs and down to their last three outs, the Eagles mounted a two-out rally.

With Laird aboard via a single to left, a Shelby Clark double to left cut the Chilton lead to one.

One batter later, Charley Clark sent a shot to right center field for a single to score Shelby Clark and tie the game at 10-all.

The Tigers went down in order in the bottom half of the seventh inning, and the game went to extra innings.

As a tiebreaker, an Eagles base runner was placed on second base to start the top of the eighth inning, but three batters and three outs later, the Tigers would have their turn to attempt to end the game.

With Gabriel Kelley standing on second and Caton aboard with a walk, a Holly Watts single to left field scored Kelley and gave the Tigers the win.

Katie Eiland, Emily Sanders and Somer Roberson all pitched for the Eagles, giving up a combined 11 runs, 15 hits, three walks and two strikeouts. Shelby Clark led for Calera at the plate, going 4-for-4 with two singles, two walks and four RBI.

Kristen Binion pitched seven innings for the Tigers while surrendering five earned runs on 13 hits and one walk.

Watts lead the Tigers at the plate, going 3-for-5 with three singles and two RBI.

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