A 10-1 loss at White Plains Tuesday snapped a two-game winning streak for the Cleburne County softball team. The Tigers had beaten Clay Central 5-1 Monday and Sardis 12-1 on Saturday evening in their final game in the Alexandria round-robin tournament.
“Our girls are playing hard. Balls just didn’t fall our way (Tuesday) night,” Cleburne County softball coach Ron Ervin said prior to Wednesday’s practice. “It was frustrating for them. We’re just trying to keep them encouraged and keep them up right now until the ball starts bouncing our way.”
Ervin said he likens the season in softball to a marathon, reminding his players that success comes to those who are strongest at the finish without regard to how they started.
Against the Wildcats Tuesday, Kiara Akles had a double and a single and scored Cleburne County’s run when Kaity Zeiders doubled her home. Alisa Norton added a single to the attack.
“Everybody put the ball in play. They would go straight to somebody or they would make some kind of diving catch,” Ervin said.
Against Clay Central, Zeiders led on offense with a triple, a double and a single. Her courtesy runner, Caitlyn Caffee, scored once. Akles, Amber Parker and Toni Epps each had two hits. Epps and Akles each scored twice. Norton, Bailey Beam and Chelsea Parker had one hit apiece. Akles struck out 10 and gave up just two hits.
Madison Jones swung the hot bat against Sardis. She was 4-for-4 with two doubles and two singles and crossed the plate three times. Akles and Chelsea Parker each had a triple and a single and Parker scored two runs. Hannah Gossage tripled and walked and come home twice.
Amber Parker, Epps and Norton had two singles apiece against the Lions and Beam had one. Parker scored twice. Epps and Norton added one run each.
Amber Parker tossed all five innings and struck out five.
Cleburne County opened the Alexandria tournament with a 7-3 loss to Springville. Akles had two hits. Epps, Zeiders and Norton each had one hit. Norton, Akles and Caffee – running for Zeiders – scored.
The Tigers then fell to Wellborn 3-1, stranding seven runners on base. Norton was 3-for-3. Zeider had a double and Akles a single for the other Cleburne County hits. Akles scored.
For their third tournament game, the Tigers squared off again against Springville and Springville won 5-1. Gossage, Epps, Akles, Zeiders and Chelsea Parker had one hit each and Akles scored.
Cleburne County plays again on March 17 at Wellborn. The following day, the Tigers travel to Oxford. St. Clair County canceled games on March 13 and April 1.