The Man High School softball team moved to within one win of making it back to the upcoming Class A state tournament in Vienna with Thursday night’s 10-1 victory at Sherman in the regional semifinals.
Man (22-5) is scheduled to travel to play in next Thursday night’s Class A Region 3 championship game at either Greenbrier West or Fayetteville. The two teams were set to play on Friday evening.
In the game at Sherman, the Lady Billies and Lady Tide’s defense held the game in check for the first two innings with the lone hit coming off the bat of junior centerfielder Grace Cline as she hit a one out double to center with a full count in the top of the second.
Cline was left stranded to end the inning.
The spark that the Lady Billies needed came in the third inning when junior pitcher Haylee Daniels led off with a walk and was relieved by courtesy runner Shauntae Miller. Miller advanced to third on back-to-back sacrifice bunts by freshman shortstop Chelsie Vance and senior second baseman Savannah McCormack.
Senior third baseman Emilee Toler received a two out walk.
Toler was then able to steal second on a called strike to junior catcher Sydney Keffer. Keffer then sailed the next pitch over the center field fence for her first home run of the season, giving Man the 3-0 lead.
Man plated another run in the fourth inning when Cline led off with a single and ultimately scored on a passed ball.
Sophomore right fielder Madison Paynter also singled to right but was left on base to end the inning.
The fifth inning saw three more runs score for the Lady Billies as Toler, Keffer and first baseman Cydnee Lambert put together a trio of singles and Cline added a double.
The Lady Tide scored their only run in the bottom of the fifth when senior first baseman Hayley Buzzard singled to left and scored on a hit by freshman Zoie Hess.
Man added three insurance runs in the sixth off of bunt singles by McCormack and Vance, as well as hits from Keffer, Cline and Toler.
Sherman freshman Katlyn Jenkins took the loss on the mound, giving up 10 runs on a dozen hits. She struck out three batters and walked two.
Man’s Haylee Daniels pitched the win. She allowed one run on five hits as she struck out five and walked none.
The Lady Billies swept the season series with Sherman also winning 9-5 and 8-0 during the regular season.
Man now turns its attention to the May 19 regional final against either Greenbrier West or Fayetteville. The winner of that game will represent Single A Region 3 in the West Virginia State Softball Tournament, which is slated to be held at Jackson Park in Vienna on May 25-26.
2016 Man High School
Softball Schedule (22-5):
March 22: at Westside, W 9-0
March 23: Mount View, W 18-0
March 25: at Van, W 14-0
March 29: River View, W 10-0
March 30: Pikeview (DH), W 13-0, W 14-6
March 31: at Scott, W 1-0
March 31: vs. Poca (at Chapmanville tourney), L 2-10
April 1: vs. Westside (at Chapmanville tourney), W 11-0
April 2: vs. Nicholas County (at Chapmanville tourney), W 10-1
April 2: vs. Mingo Central (at Chapmanville tourney), W 10-0
April 6: Chapmanville, L 0-9
April 7: at Logan, L 0-8
April 11: at Mingo Central, W 11-0
April 12: Sherman, W 9-5
April 13: at River View, W 19-0
April 14: at Tug Valley, W 12-0
April 18: at Buffalo, W 11-1
April 19: at Chapmanville, L 0-2
April 20: at Wyoming East, W 1-0
April 21: Westside, W 5-1
April 25: Van, W 10-0
April 26: at Sherman, W 8-0
April 28: Logan, W 2-1
April 29: Buffalo, W 3-2
April 30: Wyoming East, L 1-3
May 3: Tug Valley (Class A sectional tourney), W 7-0 (forfeit)
May 12: at Sherman (Class A regional semifinals), W 10-1
May 19: at Greenbrier West/Fayetteville (Class A regional final), 6 p.m.
(Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner).