The Lady Bulldogs rolled into Sayre on Thursday to play in the 2016 Lady Eagles Classic softball tournament. Their first opponent of the tournament also happened to be one of the toughest teams in the state, the Sentinel Lady Dawgs.
Sentinel proved why they are considered one of the best, taking the game over in the fifth inning by scoring six runs to go up 13-2 on the Lady Bulldogs. Even though Altus started a rally, they came up short and took a 13-5 loss into the loser’s bracket.
Sentinel only recorded two more hits than the Lady Bulldogs but took advantage of three Altus errors.
The Sentinel defense did not allow any of their own errors to distance themselves from a Lady Bulldog team whose bats have recently resurfaced and provided a much needed offensive attack.
Unfortunately, costly mistakes continue to keep the Lady Bulldogs from winning. Typically, when the Lady Bulldogs commit three or more errors, their winning percentage plummets compared to games in which they commit two or fewer.
After falling behind 4-1 in the top of the second inning, the Lady Bulldogs put their second run on the board in the bottom of the second inning off a Kelsee Baker groundout that brought in a waiting Alex Jackson, but the Lady Bulldogs’ Marisol Garcia failed to tag up and strand two on base to end what could have been a big inning.
Sentinel and Altus were both silent in the third, but Sentinel was able to plate three in the top of the fourth to take a 7-2 lead before scoring six more runs in the top of the fifth to go up 13-2.
The Lady Bulldogs rallied in the bottom of the fifth, scoring three when Baker stole home and Kymbree McKee doubled to bring in Destiny Smalts.
McKee also stole home to give the Lady Bulldogs their third run of the inning, but Cragin Steed was caught stealing home to end the game at 13-5.
McKee led all hitters with a 2-for-3 performance, scoring once and bringing in two.
However, it was a tough day on the mound for McKee who allowed five hits and seven earned runs in four and one-third innings of work.
Game 2: Nine-run second sinks Sayre
The Lady Bulldogs entered the loser’s bracket and unfortunately, Sayre was in Altus’ way.
Altus began the game by scoring four runs in the top of the first after Baker and Smalts both singled with no outs to put the Lady Bulldogs in prime position to jump ahead of Sayre.
Sydney Simmons singled to right field to score both Baker and Smalts, McKee singled to left field, and Anna Simmons walked to put Sayre in trouble, down 2-0 with one out.
Jackson doubled to score McKee and A. Simmons before Haley Simmons struck out to end the inning with the Lady Bulldogs up 4-0.
Sayre managed only one run in the bottom of the first, pulling within three of the Lady Bulldogs, but that only lasted until the Bulldogs stepped up to bat.
The Lady Bulldogs scored eight runs before Sayre got two outs in the bottom of the second with Altus relying on strong hitting and smart baserunning to extend its lead on Sayre.
A Smalts groundout scored a 13th and final run and Altus kept Sayre scoreless through a final at-bat to win the game by a score of 13-1.
Kelsee Baker went 3-for-3, scoring three times, and bringing in one, while Sydney Simmons had a 2-for-3 showing with one run scored and four runs-batted-in.
Kymbree McKee regained her composure and pitched three innings, allowing one earned run on one hit.
Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221, ext. 2076.