Blount Press Row

Soup’s On!

Campbell game-winner wins back Lady Tornado No. 1 ranking

_MG_1212Lady Tornado catcher Hattie Campbell looks to cut off the runner on Thursday at Alcoa. Photos by Jolanda Jansma

By Stefan Cooper
Editor
Blount Press Row

Like the soup company, when Alcoa had to have it in the bottom of the seventh, Hattie Campbell was mmm, mmm, good.

Lady Tornado junior Abbey Lawson beats the throw to first.

Lady Tornado junior Abbey Lawson beats the throw to first.

The Lady Tornado sophomore belted a two-out, 3-2 fastball down the third baseline with a terrific smash, scoring freshman Madison Reed from third, and Alcoa rallied to upend visiting Christian Academy of Knoxville, 9-8, in a slugfest Thursday afternoon.

“I love being in that position,” Campbell said. “I just had to put the bat on the ball. It was an outside fastball, and I just took it down third.”

Campbell’s game-winner returned to the Lady Tornadoes their No. 1 state ranking on CoachT.com.

Alcoa (8-1, 2-0 4AA) opened the week in the top spot, only to slip to fifth after a 5-2 loss to Carter on Wednesday. To reclaim the top spot against the big-hitting Lady Warriors was no easy thing, Lady Tornado coach Mike Brown said.

“They’re a great team,” he said. “They have some awesome hitters. You just have to hit back; you have to score with them.”

Starter Miranda Wallace makes the offering.

Starter Miranda Wallace makes the offering.

Clouting a pair of homers and four doubles on the afternoon, Christian Academy pressed Alcoa with a formidable power display. Hannah DeVault, with a two-out shot in the third, and Caroline Cavin, with an impressive launch to straightaway center to lead off the fourth, both went deep for the Lady Warriors.

Alcoa answered each surge. A series of timely plays defensively, perhaps, were more decisive.

“They (the Lady Tornadoes) never gave up,” Brown said. “They’re young and they don’t know when to quit.”

With two out and a Lady Warrior at second in the Christian Academy third, left fielder Abby Lawson gunned a one-hop throw to the plate to get the runner at home to end the inning.

Sophomore Maggie Roark relieved starter Miranda Wallace in the fourth and struck out the last two batters in the inning with runners at second and third.

In the Christian Academy fifth, centerfielder Christian White burned a throw to second for the third out, retiring a Lady Warrior looking to stretch a single to a double.

Sophomore Maggie Roark relieved in the fourth to get the win.

Sophomore Maggie Roark relieved in the fourth to get the win.

Christian Academy opened a 1-0 lead in its half of the second, only to see Roark reach on an error and score to even things half an inning later. The Lady Warriors powered away with two runs in the third and three more in the fourth to open a 6-1 advantage.

A three-run Alcoa fifth made it a game again, Reed, single, White, walk, and Campbell, hit by pitch, each boarding and scoring to reduce the ground to be made up to 6-4.

Lawson, single, and White, double, got on and got home in the sixth, matching the deuce the Lady Warriors recorded in the top half of the frame.

“My assistant coach (former Maryville Lady Rebel Haley Hilliard) looked at me in the sixth inning and said, ‘We’re going to win this game,’” Brown said.

Good coaching.

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