Lady Mavs one win away from Region
The Anderson County High School Softball Lady Mavericks opened up the District 3-AAA Tournament with two straight shutout wins, and are one win away from clinching a Region Tournament appearance.
The third-seeded Lady Mavs opened district tournament play against the six-seed, Knoxville Central, on Thursday evening.
The Lady Mavericks blanked the Lady Bobcats, 9-0.
Sophomore Hannah Freeman earned the start in the circle for Anderson County, and would throw a complete-game, three-hitter.
Freeman pitched seven innngs, faced 24 Cental batters, and honed in 46 strikes on 65 pitches.
The sophomore only gave up three hits, no runs, walked none, and had three K’s.
Behind Freeman, the Anderson County defense was on its toes all night, and played an error-free ballgame.
Offensively, the Lady Mavs got the bats producing early and often.
With two on and one out, in the bottom of the first inning, freshman Leah Freeman would give Anderson County an early 1-0 lead.
The freshman smashed a line drive to center for an RBI-double to score Mallorie Overton, and advance Emilee Fowler to third.
The ensuing batter, Aundria Long, would hit a RBI-sac-fly to center to bring in Fowler, and Anderson County led 2-0.
In the bottom of the second inning, with Jade Richards on second, senior left fielder Kenzie Jones would rip a line drive to center.
Jones switched places with Richards, and the RBI-double gave the Lady Mavs a 3-0 lead.
In the third inning, Emilee Fowler led off for Anderson County. On the first pitch of the at-bat, the Maryville College commit would jack a solo dinger to left, and the Lady Mavs took a 4-0 lead over Central.
With two outs and two on, Hannah Freeman stepped up to the plate. The sophomore would line a two-RBI-single to center, and Anderson County led 6-0.
In the bottom of the fouth, Fowler would deliver again. With Overton on second, Fowler smoked a drive off the left field fence for an RBI-double, which scored Overton.
Two batters later, Fowler would steal home on a wild pitch to give the Lady Mavs an 8-0 lead.
Anderson County’s run production would be capped off in the bottom of the fifth, when Richards stole home on a wild pitch.
Anderson County’s 9-0 win over Central set up a showdown with Powell the following night.
The Lady Mavs had faced the Lady Panthers on four occasions during the regular season, but were winless in those meetings.
However, that changed on Friday night.
The Lady Mavericks stunned the defending AAA state champions 1-0 in ten innings, for a massive confidence boosting win.
Senior Maryville College commit Hannah Bruce earned the start in the circle, for Anderson County.
Bruce threw all ten innings to earn the complete game win.
The senior faced 34 Lady Panthers, and threw 82 strikes on 125 pitches.
Bruce gave up only three hits, no runs, walked one, and had nine K’s.
Anderson County’s lone, game-winning run would come in the top of the tenth inning.
With Leah Freeman placed on second, Aundria Long led off for the Lady Mavs.
On a wild pitch, Freeman advanced to third, before Long would hit an RBI-groundout to second to score Freeman, and Anderson County took a 1-0 lead.
In the bottom half of the tenth, Hannah Bruce and the Anderson County defense would force the Lady Panthers to go three-up, three-down to end the ballgame.
With their two wins and with the double-elimination style bracket of the district tournament, Anderson County currently sits in a very good position.
The Lady Mavs faced the top-seeded Halls Lady Devils, in the battle of the unbeatens, on Tuesday night at 6:00, at Powell High School.
The winner of that contest advanced to the District 3-AAA championship, and locked up a birth in the Region Tournament.
However, the results on that contest were not available by press time.
Game one of the district championship game will be Wednesday night, at 8:00, at Powell High School.
If both teams only have one loss in the tournament after game one of the district championship, there will be a deciding game two.
The if-needed game two of the district chamipionship will take place on Thursday, at 6:00, at Powell High School.