NETTLETON – The Hamilton Lady Lions had a huge hit off their bench to tie their game against New Hope on Saturday afternoon then walked it off after the time limit put a runner on second in the international tiebreaker rules.
Hamilton catcher Melba Jones came off the bench with a game-tying two-run homer, and Mallory Kendall reached on an error to send the winning run in on a 4-3 comeback win over the Lady Trojans.
“Melba had been struggling bad, and we didn’t really bench her that game, but we knew Afton (Irvin) and Abigail (Gill) had worked well together in a junior varsity game,” Hamilton coach Bryan Loague said. “That was what we wanted for the pitching matchup, so I kind of benched her and hurt her feelings a little bit, but she came off the bench there with a big hit, her first career home run.”
New Hope took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third, but Hamilton was quick to tie it up in the bottom half on Aniston Atkins’ RBI single.
The Lady Trojans went back up 3-1 in the fourth before Jones smashed her two-run shot after Payton Atkins was hit by a pitch.
The Lady Lions got hits from Faith Imel and Kylie Springfield in the fifth but were unable to cash in on a run.
The two teams went to the tiebreaker with the time limit expiring in the sixth, and the Lady Lions were able to hold the New Hope runner at third.
Madison Mitchell started out the bottom of the inning on second, and it looked like she would be stranded as well before Kendall’s ball was dropped by the second baseman, allowing Mitchell to race home and score the winning run.
Afton Irvin was solid in the circle, picking up the win.
“She pitched pretty well, and she had been dominant the night before against Mooreville in JV,” Loague said. “She threw strikes for the most part, struggled a little early with some nerves, and Madison (Evans) saved the game out here in left, no doubt, with her diving catch.”
Also on Saturday
The Hatley Lady Tigers dropped a pair at the Nettleton Tournament, nearly getting a comeback in an 8-7 loss to Choctaw Central and falling 2-0 after a late score by Mooreville.
Hatley took a 2-0 lead in the second on a sac fly from Bre Harmon and Chloe Wilbanks scoring on an error, but Choctaw scored seven in the third and added another in the fourth.
The Lady Tigers had a five-run fourth with Jessie McHenry and Peyton Wilkinson each smashing doubles and Brooklyn Mohler also having an RBI hit.