Bears making second straight state softball tourney appearance

Published 8:02 pm Thursday, May 14, 2015

Out at second: Billingsley’s Makaela Tindol (left) tags out a runner at second base during the state softball tournament.

Out at second: Billingsley’s Makaela Tindol (left) tags out a runner at second base during the state softball tournament.

Billingsley’s softball team began its appearance in the Class 1A state tournament like it had been there before, defeating South Lamar, 4-2.

The Bears are, in fact, familiar with the state tournament, as they also earned a berth last year.

Billingsley didn’t waste any time in the top of the first inning, scoring all four runs with one out.

After a walk and an out to kick off the game, Ariel Cleckler got the rally started with an RBI single that put the Bears’ first run on the board.

Another walk and a steal placed runners on second and third, setting the stage for the Bears’ most significant hit of the game.

Casey Hadley crushed a three-run home run over the right field fence, tallying a 4-0 score that remained steady until the fifth inning.

South Lamar tried to answer to the Bears’ offense in the bottom of the fifth but was only able to generate one run against Billingsley’s aggressive defense.

Another lone run for South Lamar in the seventh brought the overall score 4-2.

A productive first inning at the plate and an impressive defensive performance left Billingsley victorious and hopeful going into its next game.

Katlyn Childress got the win on the mound, and said that she and her teammates were “better prepared” to take home the championship this year.

“I think our team just got a little taste of what it’s like to be at state last year,” Childress said. “This year, we’re trying to bring home a ring.”

The Bears faced the Athens-Bible Trojans in their second game of the tournament.

Like the first game, Billingsley didn’t hesitate to get on the board, scoring two runs in the top of the first.

They extended the lead further in the fifth inning, starting with a single by Makaela Tindol.

An RBI bunt by Kaitlyn Reed, followed by an RBI double from Abby Tindol, brought Tindol around the bases, bringing the score to 3-0.

However, the three-run lead was short-lived as the Athens Bible offense exploded in the top of the sixth, producing two RBI singles and a two-run home run that put the Trojans ahead 4-3.

Billingsley’s bats were unproductive in the seventh inning, sending the team into the loser’s bracket.

Billingsley was scheduled to play Ragland Thursday evening.

The double-elimination tournament is being played in Montgomery.