Isabella sweeps area tourney

Published 10:41 pm Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Isabella Lady Mustangs defeated Thorsby and Reeltown on Thursday to become the Area 6 softball tournament champs.

In the first two games, Isabella beat Reeltown 7-4 and Thorsby 7-6 to advance to the final round of the double elimination tournament. In Game 3, the Thorsby Lady Rebels sent Reeltown packing with an 8-2 victory.

Game 4 was pretty much dominated by Isabella, as they came out on top 8-1.

“I’m just proud to death of my girls,” said Isabella coach Mike Ratliff, who was doused as he made his way off the field.

Isabella had struggled for most of the season with injuries, but Ratliff said he challenged the girls to play their hardest and not lose heart.

“We could be the team we wanted to be,” he said. “They just rose to the occasion.”

In Game 1 versus Reeltown, Isabella’s Dezaray Lodge homered in the fourth inning, and the team scored five runs in the fifth. Pitcher Raelynn Liveoak struck out five Reeltown batters.

Lodge homered again in Game 2, sending Heather Ray to the plate in the first inning. Liveoak then went yard in the fifth, and in the bottom of the ninth, Kaylynn Culp won the game with a 2-run dinger.

For Thorsby, Ashlin Hilyer went three for five, hitting two doubles and 2 RBI. Heather Day also knocked in a run with two singles. Tiffany Morgan pitched for the Rebels and struck out seven batters.

Hilyer went three for four against Reeltown; and Morgan, Katie Barnett and Chelsea Moon each had a pair of hits. Lindsay Peace sat down eight batters.

The home runs continued for Isabella in the deciding match-up. These came courtesy of Liveoak, Lodge and Culp. Culp’s was a three-run home run in the sixth inning. Liveoak also struck out four.

“We were thankful for the opportunity to play in this tournament,” said Thorsby coach Nicole Hilyer, “and we’re looking forward to playing in Troy next week.”