Dickson senior third baseman Kelsie Bidwell didn’t view Tuesday’s District 5A-2 Slow-Pitch Tournament as a way for the Lady Comets to avenge a season-ending loss to Plainview last fall during the fast-pitch season.
“Coming into slow-pitch, it’s a completely different ball game,” she said. “But we just came into this as it’s another game to win. This is another team in a red uniform. Normally, we get scared when we see red in a uniform. This game, we did our best and got down and played ball.”
Dickson center fielder Harlee Bailey squeezed a fly ball hit off the bat of Hanna Beth Matherly to preserve an 11-10 victory in the second game to allow the Lady Comets to clinch a series sweep.
In game one, Bidwell lined the game-winning single into centerfield in the bottom of the seventh as Aly Goss scored from second base to lift Dickson to a walk-off 3-2 victory.
“The girls played hard all day and had a lot of energy,” Dickson coach Kyle Palacol said. “It’s the first plaque these seniors have brought home since their sophomore season and it shows the testament to their hard work. They are finally able to reap the rewards of all of the hard work they have put in.”
Dickson won all three games despite not having senior Madison Rozzell available. She sustained a knee injury in the Lady Comets’ previous tournament. Her status moving forward is not available.
Kammi Battles clubbed her second of two home runs on the day in the bottom of the second, a three-run shot, for a 5-0 Lady Comets lead.
“We call her kamikaze for a reason,” Bidwell said. “She can hit the ball pretty hard.”
Dickson’s lead grew to 9-1 in the fifth inning. Bailey and Lauren Bess began the frame with back-to-back singles. Three batters later, Kim Clark hit a double.
With its season on the line, Plainview didn’t go down without a fight.
Lady Indians coach Tim Wade told his players they needed to change their approach at the plate and be more selective with the pitches they hit.
Halee Womack’s double highlighted a three-run frame for the Lady Indians, who finally came alive on offense after scoring just once through the game’s first five innings.
Plainview was energized.
That set up a dramatic finish.
In the top of the seventh, Brooklyn Storts tripled and proceeded to score on a Billye Lester RBI ground-out.
The deficit was now 11-10.
“They became a little more patient, not chasing stuff and not being too antsy,” Plainview coach Tim Wade said. “I think they pressed and a little bit towards the end, I said. ‘You cannot force the issue. Work away on taking the ball away more, and they did.’
“They started to finally put it in the gaps. There are three girls in the outfield, and once they finally start to hit the gaps, we could score a bunch. It was too little, too late.”
Bailey’s catch of a Matherly fly-out ended the game and the season for Plainview.
In game one, Bryttni Garnder lined a double with two outs in the third inning to put the Lady Comets in front 2-1.
In the fifth, Lester reached on a fielder’s choice and later scored to knot the score at 2-2.
Matherly had three singles.
Plainview had base runners in all but one inning but managed just two runs.
Bidwell’s walk-off hit in the bottom of the seventh proved to be the difference.
“I was just thinking in my head, ‘I’ve got to get this for my team. It’s a have-to for my team,’” she said. “When we had called timeout and our coach was talking to us at third base, I honestly sat there and prayed. I thought, ‘God has got to be on our side for this one. I’ve got to get this hit for my team.’ And I did.”
The series marked the final time that Plainview seniors Mae-Kayla McCann, MiKaylyn Gerken and Cassidy Ray suited up in a Lady Indians uniform.
Dickson 12, Lindsay 1
Bidwell fell a home run short of the cycle and Kylie Farmer added three singles to lift the Lady Comets to the easy win.
Battles opened the scoring with a solo home run with two outs in the first inning.
Plainview 14, Lindsay 4
Plainview pounded out 15 hits in the tournament opener.
Gerken, Matherly and Womack each had three hits.
The score was tied at 2-2 heading into the fourth inning where the Lady Indians proceeded to score seven runs, which included five key hits — a triple by Gerken, doubles by Storts and Ray, and singles by Matherly and Womack — to break the game open.