Green’s walk-off single thwarts Southern rally effort

Published 12:41 pm Thursday, March 23, 2017

STANFORD — Carmen Green’s single with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning handed Lincoln County a 10-9 walk-off victory over visiting Madison Southern Monday at Veterans Park.
Green sent a 1-2 pitch through to right field, bringing home Abby Sparkman from third with the game-winning run in a comeback four-run inning.
In her first four at-bats, Green seemed tentative at the plate and struck out each time. However, in her final at-bat, the junior infielder delivered with a power shot.
“She got mad,” Lincoln coach Jeff Young said. “She got mad because I took her out of the game. She concentrated a little more that last time and she got her hit. She just needed to believe in herself.”
With her team trailing 9-6, Chyna Dyehouse, who reached base in all four of her trips to the plate, ignited the decisive seventh-inning rally for the Lady Patriots with a leadoff walk. Winning pitcher Sidney Slone beat the throw to first to reach and move Dyehouse around then Jacque Upchurch reached on a walk.
With the bases loaded, Sparkman delivered a shot to left centerfield to bring home Dyehouse and Sara-Mae Bullock, courtesy runner for Slone, to get Lincoln (1-0) within 9-8. Maddy Boyle, running for Upchurch, scored on a wild pitch to tie the game and, after a Taylor Bird bunt, a ground out and a strike out, Green set off the victory celebration with her walk-off single.
Lincoln’s seventh-inning rally spoiled a valiant effort by the Madison Southern offense that enabled the Lady Eagles to come back from a 6-2 deficit.
Morgan Anglin, who led off the game with a solo home run, got Southern (1-1) started in the top of the seventh with a lead-off walk. She moved around to second on a one-out walk of Taylor Seals, advanced to third on a dropped ball then both Anglin and Seals scored on an RBI-single by Alicia Venter to trim the deficit to 6-4.
The Lady Eagles soon had the bases loaded with Alyson Riley, who reached on the dropped ball, and Venter joined on base by Breonna Allen, who was hit by a pitch. Slone then pitched a bases-loaded walk to plate Riley and Venter followed her across home on a flyout to even the game at 6-all. 
A Lincoln fielding error allowed Allen to score and push Southern on top, then Zaria Carter scored on an Anglin single with two outs to make it 9-6. Savannah Fallis got on base on an error before Slone got out of the inning with a fly out.
“Right now, when they get in a tight situation, they panic. And that’s what happened there (Southern rally),” Young said. “I told them, ‘I can’t go out there and play for you. You’ve got to believe. You’ve got to start believing.’”
While the Lady Patriots overcame the “panic” in Monday’s opener to claim the win, Young says the team isn’t ready to play yet.
“We don’t have confidence in ourselves,” he said. “We don’t believe in ourselves. We’ve got a good team, but they don’t believe it yet. It’s going to have to happen out here on the field for them to believe it.”
The second-year coach said that, while it was not their best effort, the Lady Patriots can build on the opening win. “
The good thing is we don’t have to be good right now. We’ve got a month before we’ve got to be good,” Young said. “We’ll take this win and try to build on it. They did come back in the bottom of the seventh. We’ll build on it. We’ll get better.”
“Again, we’re not going to compete with the good teams if we don’t start believing in ourselves.”
Slone gave up seven hits, with eight walks while striking out five Southern batters in the complete-game win.
Dyehouse got Lincoln on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second when she scored on a Slone double to left field. Jenna King, who led off the third with a double, made it 2-1 Lady Pats when Dyehouse drove her in. 
Riley tallied a run on an error in the top of the fourth to tie the game at 2-all only to have Lincoln answer with three runs in the fifth and one in the sixth for a 6-2 advantage.
Madisen Hinkle reached on a walk in the fifth, Kallie Phillips doubled to left to plate Hinkle and Dyehouse also walked on. Trinity Shearer, running for Phillips, scored on an error and Dyehouse came home on a wild pitch. In the sixth, Bird singled to reach then scored on a Hinkle RBI-single. 
*****
at Veterans Park   
      1   2   3  4  5  6   7      R    H    E
MS    1  0  0   1  0 0  7  –  9   7  2
LC    0   1   1   0  3  1  4   –  10  11  4