RCHS found out it was ranked in the top 10 in the state on Wednesday, then promptly went out and put a convincing win together against Wellborn the next day.
Talee Sims hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth to put RCHS up by 10 and give the ninth-ranked Lady Tigers the walkoff victory.
The Lady Tigers scored at least one run in every inning except the second, and Lexi Key pitched six solid innings to get her eighth win of the season.
The RCHS offense was consistent and relentless, especially in the 2-3-4 spots in the order.
Key, Brantlee Wortham and Sims combined for eight of the 12 RCHS hits in the game, with Wortham going 4-for-4 with two doubles, an RBI and four runs scored. Sims went 2-for-2 with a sacrifice fly and three RBI, and Key went 2-for-4.
Wortham now leads the team with a .553 average for the year, while Sims has hit three home runs and driven home 23 to go along with a .514 average.
RCHS is now 11-5.
The Handley Lady Tigers won all four of their games Saturday in a tournament hosted by Piedmont. That gave Handley five straight victories overall before that streak was snapped in a Monday loss to Cherokee County.
Here’s how the week went for the Handley softball team, which is now 14-6 on the season.
Saturday – Handley 3, Etowah 1
Saturday – Handley 7, Woodland 2
Saturday – Handley 3, Pell City 1
Saturday – Handley 10, Ragland 3
Monday – Cher. Co. 6, Handley 2
- Ava Hill had at least one hit in all five games, including a home run in the win over Pell City. She drove home a total of five runs for the week and also got the win in the circle against Pell City after she allowed just one run on two hits and struck out four in five innings. Hill is now 6-2 with a 1.83 ERA in eight appearances this season. She also leads Handley with a .561 batting average at the plate.
- Mariana Whaley hit her first home run of the season against Etowah and finished the week 6-for-14 with four RBI. She also pitched the team to victory over Woodland Saturday, going four innings and allowing two hits and striking out five. Whaley is hitting .417 this season and leads Handley with 18 RBI.
- Breydan Watkins also homered against Pell City – her fourth of the year – and got the pitching wins in the games against Etowah and Ragland. The eighth-grader went a total of eight innings in the circle, allowing four runs and striking out 18. She is now 5-2 with a 4.15 ERA this season and has struck out 40 hitters in 30.1 innings.
- Alexis Henry went 6-for-15 and scored five runs over the five-game stretch. That hot streak continued a steady ascent at the plate for Henry, who was hitting an even .200 after a loss to Pleasant Valley on March 3. Since then she has gone 19-for-40 over the last 13 games and raised her average to .404 for the year.
The Lady Bobcats played in the same Piedmont tournament – and the same pool of teams – as Handley, but they did not fare as well as they went 1-2-1 in their four tournament games before taking a tough one-run loss to Cleburne County on Monday.
Woodland is now 7-9-1 on the season.
Saturday – Woodland 5, Pell City 5
Saturday – Handley 7, Woodland 2
Saturday – Woodland 4, Ragland 3
Saturday – Etowah 11, Woodland 2
Monday – Cle. Co. 3, Woodland 2
- McKenzie McCormick continues to distinguish herself as possibly the best hitter in the county after she went 8-for-13 with two home runs for the week. Her two-run shot in the fifth inning against Ragland broke a 2-2 tie and helped Woodland to its only win in the Piedmont tournament. McCormick is now batting .630 for the year with five home runs and 21 RBI. To put that in perspective, she has come to bat 55 times in her team’s 17 games and has only been retired in 20 of those plate appearances. That means she makes an out, on average, approximately once per game. Of her 34 hits, 22 have gone for extra bases, which helps explain her ridiculously high 1.933 OPS. She’s doing all of that while carrying the vast majority of the pitching load for Woodland. She pitched in four of the five games over the past week and has a respectable 4-5 record in 15 appearances.
- Leah Williamson had at least one hit in all five games, and went 7-for-13 during that stretch. Williamson has also been retired just 20 times in 57 plate appearances and is hitting .583 with a 1.566 OPS.
- Julianna Lovvorn hit her third home run of the season in the win over Ragland and went 5-for-9 in the four tournament games. She is hitting .545 for the year with three home runs, 11 RBI and a 1.552 OPS.
- Railey Williams cracked the starting lineup three weeks ago and has played well in 11 games. She has posted a .455 batting average (10-for-22) and already leads the team with nine walks. That gives her a .710 on-base percentage, which also is good for the team lead.