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Diamond Eagles strand 13, fall in extras

September 1, 2010

The Hebron Christian Diamond Eagles out-hit the Lady Patriots of Marshall Academy on Monday night 7-3. When the final score was tallied, however, the Holly Springs team took the home win 2-1 in extra innings.
“I could tell in the first inning we didn’t come to play,” said Hebron head coach Cass Tapley. “We were slow with the bat all day. We weren’t striking out just were not driving the ball and there was really no reason for that except lack of focus.”
Hebron traveled to Marshall on Monday afternoon, and despite a good game in the field, they could not get anything going at the plate in a timely fashion. Not being able to hit with runners in scoring position cost the Lady Eagles a victory.
Jessica Flemming was able to put the ball in play in the top of the fourth, with the score knotted at zero. She would reach on an error. Tori Nichols, who has been one of Hebron’s top clutch hitters this season, followed that up with an RBI triple to put the visiting Hebron team on the board.
During the Lady Patriot’s half of the fifth inning, Hebron would return the favor of an error, allowing Marshall to tie the game up 1-1.
“If not for the infield error in the fifth, we go home with a 1-0 win, which would have been a steal anyway since Marshall out played us,” said Tapley.
The score would remain that way as regulation expired and the two teams were sent into extra innings.
The next stage of the game was plain and simple. If Marshall scored, they win the game.
Hebron looked like it was going to take advantage of Marshall’s tired pitching in the first extra inning, loading the bases with just one out. However, they could not get the potential winning run in from third, taking the tie into the bottom of the eighth. Fortunately for Hebron at this point, starting pitcher Chloe Tapley was able to hold them off from scoring.
The game went to the top of the ninth, where the Lady Eagles threatened with two on, but consecutive fly ball outs cost them a chance to take the lead.
Then came the bottom of the ninth. Tapley had pitched her strongest start of the season, but a lack of support eventually caught up with the Hebron pitcher, as Marshall pushed across the winning run with a one-out single.
“Chloe probably had her best pitching performance of the year,” Tapley said.
Chloe Tapley pitched 8 1/3 innings on the night. She struck out 15 batters, popped out four and scattered three hits. She walked two intentionally.
As for the hitters, the Hebron bats left 13 base runners stranded on the night.
Nichols was 1-for-3, with the triple and RBI. Magen Tapley had two hits in four at-bats, including a double. Jessica Flemming had a hit and a run. Hillary Arnold added a hit, as did Beverly Blake, who had two.
“I just have to keep preaching mental toughness, no matter who we are playing,” Tapley said.
After the varsity game, the Lady Eagles junior varsity team kept their win streak alive, winning 7-3 over Marshall.
Rebecca Faulkner went 1-for-1 with two runs. Brooke Griffin had a run as well.
Victoria Ferguson had a hit and a run, and Brynn Latham had a run.
Shelby Arnold had a double and a run, and Rachael Fpassioa had a hit. Sabrina Oswalt had a single and a run.
“These young girls continue to play solid defense, and most are getting aggressive at the plate and they are only going to get better,” Tapley said.
The Lady Eagles will try to get back in the win column on Thursday, as they take on Kemper Academy at home, at 4 p.m.

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