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Crawford County bows out in semi-finals

May 28, 2008
Crawford County had several opportunities to regain the lead in Wednesday night's Class 3A Sectional semi-final, but Salem's Megan Smith proved difficult to hit in clutch situations.

The Lady Lions scored two runs in the fourth inning to take a 3-2 lead, and eventually ending Crawford County's softball season with a 4-2 win.

Smith struck out 15 Crawford County hitters in seven innings of work.

Crawford County hit the board first, scoring their lone two runs in the first inning. With one out, Kayla Parr and Chelsey Barron strung together a pair of singles, followed by Kayla Nickelson reaching on an error to load the bases. Amanda Toney cashed in with a two-run single down the third base line. Smith then worked Salem out of the inning with consecutive strikeouts.

Salem loaded the bases in the third inning, scoring a run on a Parr wild pitch. Crawford County was able to hold Salem to one run in the third, but the fourth inning was much different.

Kristie Taylor reached first base on a play that drew an argument from the Crawford County faithful. Taylor hit the ball in front of the plate off reliever Carolyn Pellman, and ended up at third base due to a Lady Pack throwing error. Crawford County coach Lonnie Presley argued the ball made contact with Taylor before rolling into fair territory, making the ball foul. Instead, Taylor raced to first and via the throwing error started the top of the fourth at third base.

After the debate, Pellman issued a walk, then induced consecutive pop outs. Salem's Shaylee Brown then reached on an error, scoring two runs, giving Salem a 3-2 lead.

Crawford County threatened in the fifth inning, but stranded two runners. Salem added a run when Kaitlyn Lamb hit a triple to the right center field fence.

The Lady Pack couldn't cut the deficit in the final two innings, leaving two runners on base each time. In the bottom of the seventh, Barron reached on an error to lead off the inning. Nickelson followed with a single to center. Both moved up to second and third base, but Smith buckled down and pulled out a win for Salem, striking out two of the final three hitters.

Salem (16-11) advanced to face Corydon Central in the sectional final. Crawford County finished the season with a 15-13 record.

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