Running game big as a Lady Choctaws get revenge on Lexington

Thursday, May 23, 2024
Lady Choctaw Rylee Key slides into home ahead of a throw to score the first run of the game during Dyer County's win over Lexington in consolation round action on Thursday in the TSSAA Class AAA State Tournament in Murfreesboro.
State Gazette photo/Jason Peevyhouse

JASON PEEVYHOUSE

jpeevyhouse@stategazette.com

The Lady Choctaws needed three wins to advance past Thursday action in the Class AAA State Tournament as Dyer County got the first one with a more aggressive running attack on the bases, taking a 4-1 win over Lexington in the consolation round at McKnight Park.

Lady Choctaw Kennedy Hill connects for a sacrifice fly which scored the game's first run.
State Gazette photo/Jason Peevyhouse

Dyer County had been held scoreless by the Lady Tigers through eight innings at the state tournament. The Lady Choctaws broke their runless streak in the bottom of the second inning. Rylee Key was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning then advanced to third on a Katie Beth Caldwell double to centerfield. The next batter struck out but Kennedy Hill followed, sending an 0-1 pitch to left. Lexington's Mooney made the catch and Key tagged up, just beating the throw to the plate to score. Allie Shires drew a walk but the inning ended on a pop up with Dyer County leading 1-0.

The Lady Choctaws added to their lead in the bottom of the third inning thanks to a pair of Lady Tiger errors. Maddie Claire Wilkerson drew a one-out walk then advanced to third on an error, the play ending with Emma Wray at second and senior Wilkerson at third. A pop out looked to be the prelude to Lexington getting out of the inning. But, a Caldwell grounder was fielded at short but the throw drew the Lady Tiger first baseman off the bag which allowed both Wilkerson and Wray's courtesy runner,

Emma McGavock, to score to extend the Dyer County lead to 3-0 after three innings.

Dyer County was able to work around a two-out single in the top of the fourth to get a pop out to end the frame with their lead in tact.

Hill looked to extend the Lady Choctaw lead in the bottom of the frame as she singled to lead off the frame then advanced on an Allie Shires sacrifice bunt. Another sac bunt from Abbie Gibbons put Hill at third but she was stranded there by a groundout to end the frame.

The Lady Choctaws were able to retire the Lady Tigers in order but could not cash in on a lead off single from Wilkerson in the bottom of the fifth as Lexington retired the next three batters, sending the game to the sixth inning with the Lady Choctaws still up three runs.

Lexington got a one-out single from Bartholomew single in the top of the sixth but Dyer County got a pop out and a line out to get out of the situation with a 3-0 lead.

The Lady Choctaws added to their lead in the bottom of the frame as Evie Rogers singled to lead off the frame then scored on a passed ball. Dyer County did strand two other runners as the orange and white took a 4-0 lead into the top of the seventh inning.

The Lady Tigers kept it interesting in the seventh frame, getting a one-out, solo home run from Kailyn Melton to cut the Dyer County lead to three runs. But, Wilkerson got the next two batters to fly out to center and pop out to second to secure the win and advance to face Carter High in the state semifinals.

Caldwell's double was the only extra base hit as the team scattered four hits in the win.

Wilkerson picked up the win in the circle, allowing one run on five hits with two strikeouts in the complete game victory.

Dyer County and Carter's game began just minutes after the Lady Choctaws' win over Lexington.

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