The trip to Stoutland didn’t result in any victories for St. Clair softball (5-18).
The Lady Bulldogs came in as the defending tournament champions, but lost 3-0 and 9-0 to Stoutland and Tuscumbia, respectively, in pool play. St. Clair still qualified for the playoffs out of the five-team field, but again lost 6-3 in a rematch with Stoutland in the semifinals.
“All in all, it was a frustrating day,” Head Coach Garan McCuskey said. “We won this tournament last year and was hoping to come out with at least one win. We really didn’t seem to be prepared to play. Hats off (to) the other teams, they played better than we did. Stoutland has a real young ball team. They are a good team now, and will get much better.”
Stoutland went on to finish second in the tournament, losing 1-0 against Halfway in eight innings for the championship.
Kate George (4-9) took both losses in the circle against Stoutland. Two of the three runs charged to her in the first contest were unearned.
“We couldn’t get anything going offensively at all,” McCuskey said of the first matchup. “Stoutland has a young pitcher who really makes a difference on their team. We had a few hits, but couldn’t put anything together.”
Six Lady Bulldogs had one hit apiece in the game — Trisa Buffer, Mikayla Weirich, Desi York-Nunn, Macalyn LaCrone, George and Courtney Dingley.
St. Clair’s offensive woes continued against Tuscumbia as George and Dingley recorded the only two Lady Bulldog hits against the Lady Lions.
“We hit the ball this game; no strikeouts, just could not find any holes,” McCuskey said. “Every ball we hit was right at someone.”
Trish Buffer (0-9) was the pitcher of record against Tuscumbia.
“She struggled a bit locating her fastball, but overall it was an OK game for her,” McCuskey said. “She gave up a lot of bloop hits just over our infielders’ heads.”
Errors were the main culprit in the Stoutland rematch. George again allowed just one earned run out of six.
St. Clair got its first runs of the tournament in the first inning of the semifinals when Buffer led off with a single and advanced to third on a base hit by York-Nunn. LaCrone then drove in Buffer and advanced York-Nunn to second with a sacrifice fly before George singled in York-Nunn.
Weirich’s solo home run to lead off the third inning was the last of the St. Clair offense.
The Lady Bulldogs posted three runs on nine hits Monday in a 6-3 loss to Salem (12-6).
Buffer went 3-4 with a double and a run scored.
York-Nunn finished 2-4 with two RBIs.
Weirich was 2-4 with a run scored.
Madelyn Jones and Ashlynn McAvoy-Keltz had one hit apiece for St. Clair.
Andi Ingle scored the other run and George had one RBI.
George pitched the complete game, allowing two earned runs on nine hits and three walks.