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District 1-AA Softball… Lady Warriors survive nine-inning thriller in play-in contest

FROM STAFF REPORTS
If the rest of the District 1-AA softball tournament is anything like Wednesday’s play-in contest between the Happy Valley Lady Warriors and Central Lady Cougars, then fans are definitely going to get their money’s worth.

In a nine-inning thriller that was moved from Happy Valley High School due to field conditions to Sullivan Central with the Lady Warriors playing as the home team, the Lady Warriors squeaked past Central with a walk-off in the bottom of the ninth inning to advance in the tournament.

Central’s season came to an end.

The game was filled with goose eggs through four complete innings before Happy Valley got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth inning with a solo run.

With two outs, Olivia Absher was pegged by a pitch and raced around the bags to score on catcher Maddie Lingerfelt’s double to give the Lady Warriors a 1-0 lead.

Central was down to their final inning of regulation before they managed to push a run across with one out to even things up and send the game to extra innings tied at 1-1.

Neither team could score in the eighth inning and the Lady Warriors managed to work out of the top of the ninth after Central got a leadoff single.

Pitcher Abby Holt led off the bottom of the ninth by ripping a double to center field. Holt took third on a wild pitch and Absher was hit for the second time in the contest.

Lingerfelt then collected the walk-off on a single to center field that plated Holt and keep the Lady Warriors in the tournament.

The Lady Warriors racked up 13 hits in the contest as Lingerfelt had a 4-of-5 afternoon driving in both RBIs.

Blakelee Ollis added a 2-for-4 afternoon.

Holt pitched the full nine innings allowing only five hits and one run while striking out six Lady Cougars and walking three.

Happy Valley squares off with Sullivan East on Thursday at 5:30 pm at Sullivan East.