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Lady Tigers softball gets key win right off the bat in season opener

By By BRUCE HIXON Sports Editor
It was far from a perfect performance. Their seven errors are proof of that.
The bottom line is the Lady Tigers overcame some first game bugs to notch a 12-5 season-opening victory over the Straughn Lady Tigers at the Brewton YMCA Sports Complex Tuesday.
Most season openers are a place where teams will be able to work out some bugs. With Straughn joining T.R. Miller, W.S. Neal and Clarke County in Class 3A Area 1 this season, Tuesday's game carried a lot more importance.
T.R. Miller lashed out 16 hits, 15 from returning starters Haley Rilling (four), Terri Lynne Peacock (four), Leigh Cooper (three), Halie Ellis (two), Erin Byrne (one) and Emily Layton (one).
T.R. Miller plated runs in each of its first five trips to the plate.
Down 1-0 in the bottom of the first inning, Leslie Nalty walked, stole second, went to third on a throwing error and scored on Cooper's RBI single to tie the game.
T.R. Miller snapped that deadlock and took the lead for good with a four-run second inning. A walk to Emily Layton and a bunt single by Haley Rilling set up an RBI single by Halie Ellis and a two-run double by Nalty. A wild pitch allowed the fourth run to score that made it 5-1.
After Straughn cut that gap to 5-3 with a pair of runs in the top of the third inning, Cooper got those two back in the bottom half of the inning with a two-run double to make it 7-3.
With the lead down to 7-4 after Straughn plated a run in the top of the fourth, the host Lady Tigers pretty much secured their win with a four-run rally in the bottom half of the fourth.
Byrne and Rilling both delivered key RBI singles and a pair of Straughn errors helped two more runs cross the plate.
Cooper legged out a triple and Peacock drove her in with a single in the fifth inning that stretched T.R. Miller's lead to a game high advantage of 12-4.
That was more than enough for Ellis on the mound, who struck out four, allowed seven hits and had to work around the seven errors.
The Lady Tigers will face another area 1 opponent Monday when they travel to W.S. Neal for a 4 p.m. game. The game is in East Brewton. Original T.R. Miller schedules have the contest listed as a home game.
At T.R. Miller
Straughn 102 101 0 – 5 7 4
T.R. Miller 142 410 X – 12 15 7