Lady Lions lose extra-inning heartbreakers

BOYD – The Lady Lions got a bad call from the umpire in the bottom of the seventh that negated the winning run in Game 1 of a Region I-4A softball area playoff series on Thursday. Vernon lost 4-1 in extra innings to Brownwood, putting the Lady Lions in a must-win situation on Friday.
The Lady Lions blasted out a 7-0 win in Game 2.
It was Deja-vu in Game 3, as a controversial call in a tie game during extra innings left Brownwood with new life, and they capitalized in a 9-2 win.
Game 1
Caitlin Brints beat out a hard infield grounder to lead off. Shay Williams singled to the wall putting runners on the corners. A bunt from Addison Spencer loaded the bases with no outs. A strikeout left one out with Carolyn Taylor at bat. Taylor hit a chopper to the pitcher, who threw home for one out. The catcher threw to first to try for the double play, but the first baseman dropped the ball when Taylor ran into her, allowing Williams to score for the apparent game winner. However, after a lengthy deliberation, the umpire ruled runner interference, negating the run and ending the inning.
With new life, Brownwood pushed three runs home in the eighth to win 4-1.
The game was a pitchers’ duel from the beginning. From the circle, Williams had 15 strikeouts in the game. Vernon took a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning.
Avery Kinney drew a leadoff walk, Makyleigh Leija reached on a one-out single to center field and Emily Boyd followed with a bunt base hit. Brints then drew a walk that brought home Kinney for a 1-0 Vernon lead. The Lions left the bases loaded.
Brownwood tied the game in the sixth with a two-out homerun.
Brownwood 00 00 01 03 – 4 4 1
Vernon 00 01 00 00 – 1 7 1
Game 2
The Lady Lions showed tons of heart, taking a 7-0 win over Brownwood on Friday evening. The Lady Lions did their damage in the fourth inning, getting a 2-run homerun from Lauren Hager, scoring Addison Spence. Carolyn Taylor followed with a triple. She scored on an Avery Kinney RBI single. Then Caitlin Brints hit a 3-run homerun as Vernon went up 6-0.
Vernon added a run in the seventh. Shay Williams reached on an error, advanced to second, stole third and scored on an RBI hit from Taylor.
Hager went 3 for 3 at the plate with a homerun, triple, single and a walk.
Brownwood mustered only two hits in the game. Williams struck out 10 in the game.
Vernon 00 06 00 0 – 7 8 0
Brownwood 00 00 00 0 – 0 2 5
Game 3
The Vernon Lady Lions battled the Brownwood Lady Lions into extra innings for the second time in the series, and again got a controversial call that helped Brownwood keep a bat alive, that apparently rattled Vernon, who then gave up 7 straight runs, including four homeruns to fall 9-2.
Brownwood took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a homerun. Vernon drew even in the bottom of the first as, with two outs, Lauren Hager walked and scored on an RBI double by Caroline Taylor.
Brownwood went ahead 2-1 in the fifth. Vernon tied the game in the bottom of the sixth as Avery Kinney led off with a walk, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Jaila McBride, advanced to third on a wild pitch and then scored on another wild pitch.
The Lady Lions had a shot to win it in the bottom of the seventh, putting a runner on third, but came up dry.
In the eighth, Vernon appeared to have tagged out a base runner at second. After a discussion, the umpires judged her safe. With two outs, Brownwood hit a homerun to go up 4-2. They then rang up three more dingers to win 9-2.
Brownwood advances to play Decatur, which swept Graham.
Brownwood 10 00 10 07 – 9 11 2
Vernon 10 00 01 00 –2 6 1

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