Parkers Chapel didn’t win the regular season championship in the 2A-8 softball race. But the Lady Trojans won the district tournament crown on Saturday, beating regular-season champion Spring Hill 4-1 at Swilley Field.
The tournament title proved to be the one that counted as it put Parkers Chapel as a No. 1 seed in the upcoming regional tournament at Horatio.
Coach Miranda Carlisle said her team has turned the corner and is speeding into the postseason at full throttle.
“I think my girls took it as a rematch today. After the loss in the regular season, this is when it mattered. We fought hard and we got the win,” said Carlisle. “I think the win today is going to carry into regionals and into state if we go that far. I think winning today was crucial for our momentum.”
The Lady Trojans improved to 13-9 on the season and will face fourth-seeded Poyen at 10 a.m., on Thursday.
As of Saturday evening, Carlisle said she didn’t know much about the Lady Indians. She’s knows a lot about her Lady Trojans, however.
Senior pitcher Drue Thomas gave up two hits on Saturday after shutting out Fordyce 4-0 on two hits in Friday’s semifinal.
“I think she’s coming strong,” said Carlisle. “I think she has incredible faith in her defense always backing her up. Her hitting as well is hitting its peak at the perfect time, which is going to give her more confidence in the circle.”
Thomas had three hits against the Lady Bears on Saturday.
“The team played great. I couldn't be more proud of them,” said Thomas. “We hit great, and they played great defense behind me. I was thrilled. It means a lot to win. Going into regionals as the one seed is a big deal and it will help us out in the long run.”
The Lady Trojans had three errors on Saturday after playing error-free on Friday. None of the miscues snowballed, however, and PC actually recovered to get the out on some of the plays.
“Our defense is solid. We had a couple of errors but what I loved to see from my girls is as soon as it happened, they picked it up and either made the next play or finished that play and got the out,” said Carlisle. “My girls are confident on defense. They’re ready to go. Everybody is going to make an error every once in a while. My girls will always fight back from it.”
Offensively, the Lady Trojans have relied on timely hitting. Taylor Fortune’s two-run homer was a key in the win over the Lady Bears. Carlisle said the big hit could come from anyone in the lineup or possibly a pinch hitter.
“Our goal is solid offense, attacking that outside, pulling that inside and we make the decision on where that ball goes. We’ve got to have solid offense and our defense will follow,” she said.
“I think we have a solid team on and off the field. I can always put in pinch hitters, pinch runners, whoever it is and know they’re going to get the job done. I think we have a solid full team, even after our starting nine.”
As for the regional tournament, she added, “We’re excited. We’re ready to go. We’re ready to show everything we’ve got.”