TRM softball ends season at South Regionals in Gulf Shores; experience to be the key in 2016
The elusive second win for the T.R. Miller Lady Tigers softball team at the South Regionals in Gulf Shores reared its ugly head again Friday as the Lady Tigers saw their season come to an end with a 17-10-2 overall record.
After winning game one Thursday afternoon over Dale County 14-10, the Lady Tigers stumbled in the nightcap against Slocomb 6-1 to fall into the loser’s bracket. With their backs against the wall Friday morning, the Lady Tigers lost to Excel 8-4 to see their season end.
Game one Thursday: TRM 14, Dale County 10
In a back-and-forth game Thursday against Dale County, the Lady Tigers held off DCHS 14-10 to advance in the winner’s bracket.
TRM led 7-0 after two innings before DCHS cut the lead to 7-6 in the fourth inning. The Lady Tigers added seven more runs in the sixth inning to build a 14-6 lead. DCHS added three in the sixth and one in the seventh, but TRM held on for the win.
“We are glad to get the win and go on to the next one,” Lady Tiger head coach Greg White said. “I would have liked a little more of a cleaner win, but at this time, whatever you can do to win a ballgame is good. We did some good things. We hit the ball well and put some pressure on their defense and they made some mistakes. We had bases loaded twice and didn’t get anyone in and that could have broke the game open a lot earlier than it did. We just have to score when we get a chance.”
TRM pounded out 14 hits in the win and was aided by 10 DCHS errors.
Steely Ruzic led with a triple, two singles and three RBIS while Mallori Floyd added three singles and one RBI.
Krystal Bell added two singles, a double and three RBIs while Taylor Austin had a single, double and one RBI. Mary Madison Brown finished with two singles and one RBI while Leslie Holmes and Madison Douglas had singles each.
Taylor Austin earned the win in the pitching circle as she went all seven innings and allowed 16 hits, 10 runs, walked two, and struck out six.
Game two Thursday: Slocomb 6, TRM 1
In game two against Slocomb, the Red Tops scored three runs in the first inning and held TRM to only one hit in a 6-1 loss.
The Lady Tigers had seven hits in the loss and made six errors. TRM struck out 10 times in the loss.
At the plate, Ruzic, Floyd, Myra Reiss, Brown, and Austin all had a single each. Douglas led with two singles while Bell had the lone RBI.
Austin pitched in the loss as she allowed eight hits, six runs, two earned, walked six, and struck out three.
“They are a very solid team,” White said. “Their pitcher did a great job. Probably the best pitcher we have seen all season. We heard about her and knew she was pretty good. She mixed up her pitches really well and kept us off-balanced. I am proud of our kids for fighting. We stayed in the game the whole team after giving them three runs in the first inning.”
Game three Friday: Excel 8, TRM 4
With the game tied at 4-4 in the seventh inning, Excel plated four runs in the inning and blanked TRM in the bottom of the inning to get an 8-4 win to end TRM’s season.
In the final inning, the Lady Tigers made four errors, walked a batter, and hit a batter. Excel had only two hits in the inning, with one being a two-run homerun to put the game away.
“We just left too many plays out there,” TRM head coach Greg White said. “We did it in the first inning and we did it in here in the last inning. There were several plays out there that we should have made, but we didn’t. We just didn’t capitalize when we needed too. We were inconsistent on defense and the bats were kind of the same way. We had a couple of good innings hitting the ball and then a couple of ugly innings hitting the ball.”
Austin took the pitching loss as she went seven innings and allowed six hits, eight runs, two earned, walked two, hit one, and struck out six.
At the plate for TRM, Ruzic had two singles and a double and one RBI while Floyd had a double and one RBI.
Reiss added a single and a double and one RBI in the loss.
Brown, Holmes, Grace Ruzic and Douglas had a single each while Anna Grace White had an RBI on a sacrifice bunt to tie the game at 4-all in the sixth inning.
Excel led 2-0 after two innings and 3-1 after three innings. TRM tied the game at 3-all in the bottom of the fifth and both teams scored one run each in the sixth inning before Excel’s four-run seventh inning.
Early look at 2016
The T.R. Miller softball team ended their season Friday at the South Regionals in Gulf Shores with a 1-2 record and an overall record of 17-10-2.
TRM head coach Greg White said as far as the season goes for his team, he is proud of them.
“I never doubted their effort and hustle,” White said. “We just never got rolling. We just had a lot of ups and downs. It was just a constant wave all season long and eventually it will catch up with you. We just never got in a rhythm. At some point, you have to peak and we never got to that point. They played their tails off and I love them to death. We did what we needed to do to get here.”
As for the 2016, White’s team from 2015 had only two seniors.
“We have a lot of youth,” White said. “There were a lot of eighth, ninth and 10th graders out there on that field this year. We had a senior at third base (Krystal Bell) and another one that was our designated hitter (Leslie Holmes). We have two juniors who are getting back into the game of softball.”
White said the bulk of the team’s core is eighth, ninth and 10th graders.
“I really like what is ahead for these guys,” he said. “We need to keep working hard and stick together and I think good things are in store for them down the road.”