By Bob Flynn
Register Sports Writer
The Madison Southern Lady Eagles (18-7) battled No. 20 South Laurel to the wire, but fell to the Lady Cardinals 2-1 Monday on Senior Night.
In the end, it was a lack of offense that did the Lady Eagles in as they managed only two singles off South Laurel pitcher Hagan Burns.
“You’ve got to have more than two hits to win a ballgame,” Southern coach Brian Foley said. “But, even as badly as we hit, we still had an opportunity to win that game. You can’t ask for anything better. We still had a chance to win the game.”
The game was an old-fashioned pitching duel through the first four innings as Southern ace Tara Bord matched Burns pitch for pitch with neither allowing a run to cross the plate.
The Lady Cards finally broke the tie when Chelsea Wemes ripped a lead-off home run over the left field fence to put South Laurel on top 1-0.
The Lady Cards went up 2-0 in the sixth when Bailey Miller drove in Brittany Vandeventer, who had reached on a bunt single to begin the inning.
The Lady Eagles got back in the game in the home half of the seventh.
Bord drew a one-out walk to get things started. One out later, Kelley Freeman hit a ground ball back to Burns. Freeman reached base when the second baseman dropped the throw to first and pinch runner Morgan Reynolds moved to third on the play.
One pitch later, Reynolds scored on a wild pitch by Burns to make it 2-1, and Freeman went to second.
But Burns got Kayla Mullins on a strikeout to end the game.
Foley said the final out epitomized the Lady Eagles’ woes at the plate all day.
“That point right there is where you have to step up and get a hit. Then we’ve got the top of the order coming up and you never know what can happen,” Foley said. “But, that is usually what separates your really good teams from your average teams is a couple of hits.”
Despite absorbing the loss, Bord pitched a very good game, going seven innings, allowing only two runs on five hits, while striking out three and walking one.
“Tara pitched very well. She hung that changeup there and the girl hit it out, but other than that she held them in check,” Foley said. “I thought our outfield played really well today also. We made some plays in the outfield. That’s a Top 25 team in the state. I don’t mind a 2-1 game because it could have gone either way.”
The Lady Eagles will be back in action today when they travel to Danville to take on Boyle County.