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Lady Cats become better in 'Bama

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By The Staff

Spring break was not all about having a good time for the Anderson County softball team. The Lady Bearcats took on some of Alabama's best teams winning 2 of 3 games, including a team ranked in that state's top 10. It took a Division I college signee to shut the Lady Bearcats down in the final game of the trip.

"We had many injuries at the Ballard tourney (held March 28-29), and during spring break week," said Anderson coach Brian Glass. "That caused us to play a lot of new kids. They played well and should improve our depth as we progress through the season."

Anderson got the trip off to a good start with an extra inning 4-3 win at Foley, Alabama on March 31. Foley held a 3-1 lead after 3 innings, but freshman Chelsea Bright brought Emily Bucklew home with a sacrifice fly. Bucklew had led the inning off with a double.

Anderson tied it in the top of the seventh when pinch runner Christina Harvey scored from third as she and Bright perfectly executed a double steal.

The Lady Bearcats got the wining run in the eighth when Caitlyn Royalty raced home as Foley's shortstop booted Emily Ethington's ground ball.

Courtney Turpin picked up the win, going the distance and scattering 7 hits and striking out 5. Anderson right fielder Makenzie Stoner came up with a defensive gem, throwing out the tying run and the plate to end the game.

Two days later, Anderson came back to beat Robertsdale, Alabama's seventh-ranked team in class 6A, the largest schools. The Lady Bearcats never trailed in posting a 3-1 victory.

Royalty led the game off with a triple, then scored on a fielder's choice.

Emily Ethington scored the game's second run when she led the fourth off with a double, then scored when Lauren Brown reached as Robertsdale misplayed her hard shot.

Ethington led the Lady Cats at the plate, smacking a pair of doubles in four at-bats. Bucklew also went 2-for-4.

Brown and Turpin combined to shut down Robertsdale with Brown getting the win.

Daphne, Alabama's no. 5-ranked 6A team, finally shut down Anderson as pitcher Sarah Sigrest fired a no-hitter and recorded 17 strikeouts in a 2-0 victory.

Sigrest has signed with Jacksonville and, according to the Anderson coaching staff, is the favorite to win Alabama's Miss Softball.

Turpin threw a great game, giving up just 4 hits and striking out 7 but taking the loss.

Anderson now stands at 7-5 on the year with 9 of its 12 games coming against ranked teams.