BIC squeaks by Murfreesboro in state opener
Madison Greathouse threw out a Lady Rattlers runner trying to steal home for the final out of the game preserving a 7-6 win for BIC (22-1) in the opening round of the Class 2A State softball tournament being held in Marked Tree.
The Lady Mustangs jumped out a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning as Karoline Thomas singled with two outs before Kelsey Strickland was hit by a pitch. Both runners moved up a base and both scored on a single by Bailey Owens.
Murfreesboro scored two in the top of the second to tie the game at 2-2. BIC went back up 4-2 in the bottom of second as Kenzie Walker singled and went to third when Blaire Wildy bunted and the ball was thrown away. Walker scored on an infield single from Hannah Poe to make it 3-2 BIC. Wildy advanced to third on a fly out from Greathouse and scored when reached on an infield single making it 4-2.
BIC got two runners on in the bottom half of the third inning but left them stranded. The Lady Rattlers took advantage of several BIC errors to score four runs in the top of fourth to go up 6-4. The Lady Mustangs got one run back as Greathouse reached on a single and came around to score on a Strickland triple to make it 6-5 Murfreesboro after four innings of play.
Lexi Ray singled and stole second to get in scoring position for BIC in the bottom of the fifth inning. Kenzie Walker singled to put runners on the corner but they were left stranded there. Two nice defensive plays helped BIC in the top of the sixth as Strickland made a catch on a foul ball down the first base line and Thomas made an awesome diving catch from her catching position on a popped up bunt attempt in foul territory.
Thomas scored on a base hit from Bailey Owens to tie the game and Owens scored on a double by Catherine Colbert to make the score 7-6 headed to top of the seventh inning. The Lady Rattlers loaded the bases with no outs before Greathouse got the first out via a strikeout.
Greathoused fielded a ball and threw to home for an out. As Thomas threw the ball back to Greathouse a few pitches later the runner broke from third on a steal attempt as Greathouse threw her out easily to end the game.
"We have these games every once in a while with the errors, we had seven today and you usually don't win games at state with this type of play," BIC head coach Marty Williford said after the game. "I told the girls you can't let the errors get you down mentally. I was surprised with the last play of game, but was told they play that way down south. We got the nerves out of the way it's time to get ready for tomorrow," Williford added. Williford had nothing but praise for his pitcher. She (Greathouse) has been the leader all year. I told her to not get down 'cause the girls follow you, and she sure didn't today."
Greathouse took the win for the Lady Mustangs. Owens led BIC at the plate with two hits, a run scored and three RBIs, Thomas had two hits, two runs scored and an RBI, Colbert had two hits and a RBI, Walker had two hits and a run scored, Strickland had a hit, run scored and a RBI, Poe had a hit and RBI and Greathouse had a hit, run scored and a stolen base.