Valley and Fayetteville were victorious in section softball tournament play Tuesday night. Following is a review of the games involving local squads:
In a Class A Region 3, Section 1 game in Gauley Bridge, the No. 1 seed Greyhounds survived a 6-5 scare from No. 4 Richwood.
Richwood took a 2-0 lead in the first inning before Valley battled back. With the score knotted at 5-5 with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, Valley's Mallory Kincaid stepped to the plate. After being unsuccessful in two bunt attempts, Kincaid had to swing away, and the sophomore met with success. With extra innings imminent, Kincaid connected on an offering from Richwood pitcher Hanna Lipps, sending the ball into the outfield and scoring teammate Emmie Lopetrone from second base for the winning run.
"Early errors, jitters," said Valley head coach Marty Carver. "We had three errors in the first inning, which allowed the two runs to score.
"We kept battling, the sticks came out. We kept our bats going and started chipping away, chipping away and took the lead (5-4)."
Richwood tied it at 5-5, then a key double play by the Greyhounds "took the bat out of their hands, and in the bottom of the seventh our bats came alive again and we scored the winning run."
"Richwood's got a good team, a young team," said Carver. "I would like to had played them throughout the season.
"In the regular season, we got rained out. You go into a team blind and don't know anything about it, you ... can't set up. As the game progressed, we started (getting more familiar with the 'Jacks)."
Of tonight's foe, Fayetteville, he said, "They've got a good team, too. It just depends."
Valley defeated Fayetteville twice at home earlier this season, 5-1 and 8-7.
Of last year's section championship loss to the Pirates, Carver said, "These girls learned a lot from it and they passed it along. They know they can't give up. They've got to keep battling every minute."
Haley Myers was 3-for-3 for Valley Tuesday, and Kayla Graves and Abigail Taylor each hit a single.
For the Lumberjacks, Lipps, Emily Dillard, Brandi Gifford, Trinity Amick and Sydney King registered a hit apiece.
Valley's Emmie Lopetrone struck out four en route to the complete-game win.
Midland Trail 6
In another Region 3, Section 1 contest, No. 2 seed Midland Trail struck early and led 3-1 after two frames. However, No. 3 seed Fayetteville batted around in the third and scored six runs to assume command.
The hosts plated two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to creep to within 7-6, but Fayetteville answered with two runs of its own in the next half-inning.
Senior Cassidy Roles was 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs to power the Fayetteville offense. Annie Johnson, Nikki Holbrook and Rachel Peelish each logged a double, and Taylor Cordle and Savannah Bigham both drove in a run.
For Midland Trail, Kyleigh Jackson was 3-for-4 with two doubles and a pair of RBIs. Also, Zavery McManaway (3-for-4) and Serena Minor both had doubles, and Meghan Gill (2-for-4), Taylor Harrell, Alex Ellison and Chezney Skaggs logged one RBI apiece.
Peelish earned the pitching win.
Midland Trail will host Charleston Catholic in an elimination game on Wednesday.
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