Young Lady Tigers show promise despite two losses

Published 9:36 am Wednesday, March 7, 2007

By BY BRUCE HIXON – sports editor
Sometimes young teams have to take a step backward in order to take a step forward.
Case and point was the performance turned in by the T.R. Miller Lady Tigers softball team in Saturday's season-opening performance at the Thomasville Tournament.
While the Lady Tigers dropped both games they played, a 9-4 decision to Leroy in the opener and an 8-6 loss to Jackson in game two, T.R. Miller had a lot of positive individual contributions from a roster that contained multiple freshman and middle school players.
The Lady Tigers were cruising along with a 3-0 lead through four innings against Leroy when the wheels came off in the fifth and sixth innings. Most of those problems came on the defensive side.
T.R. Miller committed four errors in the top of the fifth when Leroy strung together a five-run rally to take a 5-3 lead. The Lady Tigers made two more errors in the sixth inning when Leroy scored four more runs to put the game away.
Natalie Neal had a single and a double to pace T.R. Miller's offense, while Amelia Couture, Sarah Lee, Brandi Kennedy and Janel McCorvey all had a single.
Kennedy took the loss, but fell victim by the nine unearned runs allowed by her defense.
The Lady Tigers also had the lead for part of their second game against Jackson.
T.R. Miller took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning when Neal singled and later scored on an infield single by Lee.
That lead held until the bottom of the third when Jackson tied the game on a bases loaded walk to Ashley Brannon and took a 2-1 lead on a sacrifice fly Brittany Harrell.
Jackson widened that advantage to 6-1 in the third inning on a key two-run double by Tiffany Beckham and RBI singles by Lynn Porter and Brannon.
A two-run, inside-the-park homerun by Lee in the top of the fifth brought the Lady Tigers to within 6-3.
T.R. Miller fought back to tie the game at 6-6 in the top of the sixth on a two-run double by Neal and an RBI infield single by Leah Brundidge.
Jackson quickly regained the lead in the bottom of the sixth when Danielle Gill singled and went to second on a passed ball. Tiffany Beckham walked and she and Gill combined on a double steal. A throwing error on the play allowed Gill to score the go-ahead run. Moments later Porter extended the lead to 8-6 with an RBI groundout.
Neal, Couture, Lee and McCorvey all had two hits to lead T.R. Miller's hitting.
Miranda Anderson worked the last two innings and took the loss.
The Lady Tigers are back in action Thursday when they host Hillcrest-Evergreen at 4 p.m.
Game one
Leroy 000 054 0 - 9 10 1
T.R. Miller 300 000 1 - 4 6 6
Game two
T.R. Miller 100 023 0 - 6 14 2
Jackson 002 402 X - 8 13 2