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Lady Chiefs, Lady Pioneers to meet for district title

By PAT KENNEY, Sports Correspondent • May 9, 2018 at 1:01 AM

JOHNSON CITY — For the David Crockett softball team, there’s always Hope.

Lady Pioneers freshman Riley Hope had three hits, drove in four runs and scored a run, and Crockett pounded Daniel Boone 14-6 in the District 1-AAA winners’ bracket final on Tuesday at Metro-Kiwanis Park.

At the same time, Cherokee got a walk-off home run from Haliey Elkins to lift the Lady Chiefs to a 3-2 victory over Dobyns-Bennett in the losers’ bracket elimination contest. And to top that off, Elkins drove in two insurance runs in Cherokee’s dramatic 4-1 victory over the Lady Trailblazers in the losers’ bracket final.

Crockett and Cherokee secured berths in the Region 1 tournament. All that is to be decided is who will be the District 1 champ.

Today at 5 p.m., the Lady Pioneers (32-9) take on the Lady Chiefs (15-15-1) to settle the issue. Cherokee must beat Crockett twice to claim the title.

The Lady Pioneers, who had 18 hits in their showdown with Boone, broke a 1-1 tie in the second inning by scoring four runs. Five more in the fourth gave Crockett a commanding 10-2 advantage.

“I was proud of the way the girls came out and hit the ball,” said Crockett coach Carla Weems. “They were relaxed before the game so I knew they were ready to go.

“This is a big win for our program. It’s time for us to shine.”

Lenzie Jenkins had four hits and two RBIs for Crockett with Sydney Fox and Mackenzie Baldwin adding two hits and three runs apiece. Matty McKee also scored three times for the Lady Pioneers.

Crockett pitcher Kara Weems was again a dominant force, striking out 14 Boone batters.

Boone scored first in the elimination game with Cherokee when freshman McKenna Dietz hit an inside-the-park home run in the third inning.

The Lady Chiefs tied the game in the fourth and took a 2-1 lead in the fifth when Erin Forgety’s groundball to the right side of the infield scored Grace Jones.

“I knew that I just had to get the ball in play and Grace would score,” Forgety said.

Elkins then put more jam on the biscuit when she hit a two-RBI single in the top of the seventh.

“It’s been a great day,” said a beaming Elkins. “We were just determined to put the bats on the ball today.”

Forgety, who pitched all 14 innings for the Lady Chiefs on Tuesday, recorded eight strikeouts against Boone.

“We worked together all day and executed the plays,” she said.

It was a tough day for the top-seeded Lady Trailblazers (31-16).

“For the last three weeks we haven’t been hitting the ball well and today it caught up with us,” said Boone coach Jeremy Jenkins. “My hats off to both Crockett and Cherokee. They just beat us.”

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