White Knoll and Lexington entered Tuesday’s key Region 4-4A softball game at The Wolf Den in hot pursuit of front-running North Augusta. Each team had just one conference loss on the books – on setbacks against North Augusta.
The host Timberwolves stayed put in second place in the standings with a 2-1 win.
“In games like this between two good teams, it usually comes down to which team makes the most mistakes,” said White Knoll coach Joey Lawson. “We’re were fortunate to be on the good side of it tonight.”
“We just couldn’t get the key hit, and in games like this any kind of mistake can be very costly,” said Wildcats coach Russell Spires.
Lexington opened the scoring in the top of the third inning on a single top right field by senior Kayley Wilson to drive in Emily Mattone.
But White Knoll countered with unearned runs in the fourth and fifth innings to give pitcher Savannah Terrapin the advantage.
In the fourth with runners on second and third base with two outs, a booted grounder allowed pinch runner Ashley Hudson to score. Hudson was in for Meagan Helms, who opened the inning with a booming double to left center field.
A throwing error allowed Kali Bishop to reach base to start the inning. Eventually, Helms’s delivered a clutch, two-out single up the middle to plate Bishop with the winning run.
White Knoll improved to 10-2 overall, 5-1 in region matters. Lexington dropped to 7-2, 2-2.
Both teams played extremely well at Lexington’s Wildcat Invitational tournament last weekend at Pine Grove Sports Complex. The Wildcats went 3-1 and advanced to the championship game, which was washed out by rain. The Timberwolves went 4-1, and beat Brookland-Cayce 4-3 in the Gold Division finale.
After going 2-0 on Friday, the Wildcats won their pool title with a 4-3, eight-inning win over Hillcrest thanks to the clutch hitting of Wilson. Lexington trailed 3-0 entering the bottom of the seventh inning but tied it up on a three-rum homer by Wilson, and won it in the eighth on Wilson’s RBI single.
The ‘Cats then made it to the tournament championship game by downing Laurens 2-1. The Wildcats scored both runs in the sixth. Mattone led off the frame with a triple and score with Carr’s potential inning-ending grounder to shortstop was mishandled. It allowed Mattone to score and Maddie Labrador followed with a game-winning triple to score Carr.
Lexington trailed a fine North Davidson team 2-1 after three innings in the finale when the rains came. Though the game was not official, Spires graciously presented the North Carolinians the first-place tournament trophy.
White Knoll’s path to the consolation title featured 4-3 wins against Hillcrest and Brookland-Cayce.
The offensive star of the tournament was sophomore shortstop Lydia Trexler, who went 10-for-15 at the plate for an eye-opening .667 tourney batting average. She delivered the game-winning hits in the Timberwolves two come-from-behind wins in the placement bracket.
Trexler’s two-run single in the bottom of the third was the difference against Hillcrest, and her two-run double in the fourth was the game-winning blow vs. Brookland-Cayce.