In the season opener for both teams, Sprayberry (0-1) took a 2-0 lead in the fourth before Pope
(1-0) came back to take the victory with two outs in the bottom of the fifth.
Alana Tinsby singled to lead-off the frame and moved to second following a one-out walk to Jenna Reilly. After a fly ball to left forced the second out, Metzinger reached first on an error that scored Tinsby from second for the Lady Greyhounds’ first run of the contest.
Kelly Barnhill’s double to center plated Reilly with the tying run, and Segers’ hit brought Metzinger home for the winning score. The game was called at the end of the fifth due to the tournament’s time limit rules.
“Even though we were down 2-0 going into that last inning, I told the girls to keep fighting and to keep battling,” Pope coach Chris Turco said. “You never know what’s going to happen and the momentum really turned in our favor after that error. We had the right players coming up to the plate so I knew we had a chance.”
Barnhill batted 2-for-3 with a double and a RBI, while Segers was 1-for-3 with a RBI. Reilly, who’s lead-off home run in the third inning was ruled a ground-rule double since it landed on the cement wall in the outfield 250 feet from home plate, also walked twice. Quentin Staton singled and stole two bases for the Lady Greyhounds.
Sprayberry couldn’t get much of anything going against Pope starter Lindsay Walsh over the first three innings before taking control in the fourth.
The Lady Yellow Jackets posted back-to-back singles from Mallory Jones and Nicole Gentile and Charlie Smith walked to load the bases. Katie Tokas’ fielder’s choice at-bat plated courtesy runner Taylor Bates, who was in for Jones, to give Sprayberry a 1-0 lead.
Lindsey Jenkins singled home Smith’s courtesy runner, Julia Abney, for the 2-0 margin. Walsh walked Winter Scott to load the bases again but struck out Kayleigh Breh to end the threat.
Jones batted 2-for-3 with two steals and Jenkins was 1-for-2 with a RBI.
Walsh gave up two earned runs on three hits, struck out seven and walked three in five innings.
“Lindsey was huge,” Turco said. “She won 10 games for us last year, stuck with it and kept her composure after they put some pressure on us in the fourth.”
Smith gave up three unearned runs on six hits and struck out two in five innings for Sprayberry.
“This loss is disappointing,” Spraybery coach Donny Robertson said, “but it also shows the girls that they’re able to play with these guys. That ball gets fielded correctly in that last inning and we win. That’s what we have to learn, how to finish games because we can hang with the best of them.”