DECATUR — While his players quickly took the suspense out of Friday’s playoff opener, Aubrey coach Shon Ranton cautioned about jumping to conclusions regarding today’s wrap-up of the best-of-three Class 3A bi-district softball series.
“I’ve seen this team [Aubrey] play its last 10 ballgames,” he said. “I can tell you one game means nothing.”
The Lady Chaps, who jumped on Decatur for 10 first-inning runs and won 20-0 Friday, play host to the Lady Eagles at 4 p.m. today. If needed, the third game of the series will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 2.
Aubrey (23-9) “played up and down through district,” according to Ranton. The Lady Chaps went 5-3 to finish second in District 10-3A, then lost a playoff warm-up game to Class 2A Callisburg last week.
“We wanted to come back and prove ourselves,” Argyle senior third baseman Nikki Brogdon said. “I think we came out ready to play and do our job. We all fed off each other the way we were all hitting the ball one after another.”
Aubrey recorded 13 base hits off a pair of Decatur pitchers, with Kayla Sullivan, Kaley Reding, Melanie Funk and Brogdon each getting a pair of singles. Brogdon knocked in three runs and Logan Even, Sullivan, Reding and Funk each had two RBIs for the Lady Chaps.
Reding, one of seven senior starters for Argyle, allowed just one hit and struck out six in four innings of work.
Decatur pitchers Madi Minor and Inez McDaniel helped Aubrey by combining for 12 walks, while the team with only a pair of seniors on its roster committed four fielding errors that made 14 of Aubrey’s runs unearned.
The game was called after four innings by mutual agreement of the coaches.
“We’ve just got to forget about this one and go out [today] and play like they know how to play,” said Decatur coach Carly Cloud, whose team finished third in District 9-3A and is now 9-18.
All 10 of the Lady Chaps’ first-inning runs were unearned after a two-out error. In all, Aubrey batted for 30 minutes in that frame, sending 15 batters to the plate and collecting five hits and five bases on balls.
Cloud switched pitchers after starter Minor retired just two of the nine hitters she faced. McDaniel faced six hitters before getting the game’s third out.
Aubrey left the bases loaded in a scoreless second inning before plating five runs and batting around in each of the third and fourth frames. Minor was reinserted at pitcher after the first two Aubrey batters reached base in the fourth.
Lady Eagles first baseman Kristina Pishotta lashed a liner past Aubrey left fielder Sullivan for a double with two outs in the bottom of the first, but Aubrey second baseman Erin De Los Santos made a nice, running grab of Dari Davis’ blooper behind first base to maintain the 10-run lead.
The only other Lady Eagles player to reach base was Mackey Dailey, who was hit by a pitch with one out in the third.
AUBREY 20, DECATUR 0
WP — Kaley Reding. LP — Madi Minor. 2B — D: Kristina Pishotta.