By Sherry Martin
The Lady Bulldogs’ softball season came to an abrupt end Saturday as they fell two games to one in the best-of-three series Region II Bi-district Championship to the Pilot Point Lady Cats.
Home field advantage proved null in the series as Royse City defeated the Lady Cats, 8-7, in the opening game at Pilot Point High School. Pilot Point in turn took the next two games by scores of, 5-0 and 7-6, at Royse City High School on Saturday.
The loss ends the Lady Bulldogs season with a 23-6-1 overall record and 8-2 in District 10-3A where the team placed second behind Wills Point.
Pilot Point, which finished third in District 9-3A, extended its overall record to 18-13-1 and will advance to face Lake Worth in the area round of the playoffs.
PILOT POINT – Erin Fudge picked up her eighteenth win of the season to lead the Lady Bulldogs to an 8-7 victory over Pilot Point in the opening contest of the Region II Class 3A Bi-district championship softball game last Wednesday evening.
The hits flew fast and furious in the game as Ashley Heinaman and Devani Harrison each batted for triples and Sarah Stutts and Dezyrae Arredondo each added doubles.
Back at home the Lady Bulldogs struggled to get on base against the Lady Cats.
Pilot Point scored in the first inning on a three-run double hit by pitcher Kelsey Ready. The Lady Cats padded their lead in the fourth off a LaTeah Lucero two-run double.
Lady Bulldogs Sarah Stutts and Erin Fudge made it on base off a walk and an error for the Lady Bulldogs in the first inning but each was caught out at second base.
Royse City didn’t seriously threaten to score again until the fifth when Jessica Barnes and Ashley Heinaman were left stranded on second and third bases. Barnes had hit a single and stole to third while Heinaman walked to first and stole second.
Region II Class 3A
Pilot Point 3 0 0 2 0 0 0-5 9 1
Royse City 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 2 4
Wining pitcher: Kelsey Ready: 0R, 2H, 5K, 3BB, 7IP
Losing pitcher: Erin Fudge: 5R, 9H, 2K, 3BB, 7IP
Pilot Point: LaTeah Lucero 1-4, 2B, Run, RBI; Kelsey Ready 2-4, 2B, 2RBIs; mattie Neal 1-4, Run, 2B.
Royse City: Jessica Barnes 1-3; Ashley Heinaman 1-2, 2B.
Down 6-4 in the bottom of the seventh, Pilot Point’s Lady Cats scratched out three runs for the 7-6 bi-district championship over Royse City.
LaTeah Lucero started the rally with a double. Kelsey Ready then walked and Cassie Farr added a single to load the bases with Pilot Point runners.
Allison Buchingham closed the gap with an RBI single and Mattie Neal hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game. Marla Owen jump-started the Pilot Point celebration with the game-winning RBI single.
Pilot Point had struck first in the game on an RBI single hit by Lucero, but Royse City’s defense held the Lady Cats scoreless until the bottom of the fourth, when Lucero, Farr and Buchingham each added runs to tie the game at 4-all
Royse City tied the game on a Sarah Stutts run in the third inning and then took a short-lived lead in the top of the fourth off runs by Jessica Barnes, Dezyrae Arredondo and Jamie Bain who was pinch running for catcher Ashley Heinaman. Erin Fudge had batted two of the runners home with a long single and Bobbie Phillips had a bases-loaded walk for the third run of the inning.
Shelby Pille took her base on a Pilot Point error and Fudge hit for an RBI double to give the Lady Bulldogs a 5-4 lead in the top of the sixth.
Royse City extended its lead to 6-4 in the top of the seventh as Arredondo walked on base and then scored on an error
Royse City’s defense held firm in their last game of the season with Fudge throwing three strike outs in the fifth and sixth innings in spite of having pitched through 12 consecutive innings for the day. Behind Fudge the Lady Bulldogs pulled in four flys while the infield turned plays for seven outs.
Region II Class 3A
Royse City 0 0 1 3 0 1 1 – 6 8 6
Pilot Point 1 0 0 3 0 0 3 – 7 6 6
Winning pitcher: Kelsey Ready: 6R, 8H, 5K, 5BB, 7IP
Losing pitcher: Erin Fudge: 7R, 6H, 5K, 1BB, 7IP
Royse City: Shelby Pille 0-3, RBI, Sarah Stutts 2-4, R; Erin Fudge 2-3, 3RBI, 2B; Julia Zielinsky 1-4; Jessica Barnes 1-4, R; Dezyrae Arredondo 1-4, 2R; Ashley Heinaman 1-2, R; Bobbie Phillips 0-1, RBI
By Sherry Martin