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Hamm pitches Lady Pioneers past Lady Blue Devils

Tanner Cook • May 29, 2018 at 12:50 AM

LEBANON — Gate City’s softball team saw its season halted at the hands of Lebanon, which claimed an 8-2 victory in the Region 2D quarterfinals on Monday night.

Lebanon’s Morgan Hamm pitched the complete game and struck out seven. She gave up seven hits and walked only one batter.

Adrienne Morrison broke open the game in the bottom of the fifth inning with her two-run home run to straightaway center.

“They just got more timely hits than us,” Gate City coach Cara Noe said. “We didn’t play bad. It’s just we didn’t get enough hits. ...

“(Hamm) is good. We knew we’d have to shorten our swings to make contact, but she did well today,” Noe added. “They’ll go a ways in the tournament.”

Gate City got on the board first when Alexis Flanary scored from second base on an Alyssa Clark single to right field in the opening frame.

From there, however, Hamm pitched lights-out. She gave up only two hits between the second and sixth innings in a standout performance in an elimination game.

Tatum Dye was 4-for-4 to lead Lebanon’s offense, scoring twice and recording one RBI. Kara Long was 1-for-3 with two RBIs and Kayla Bollinger also drove in two runs for the Lady Pioneers (21-2), who advanced to today’s regional semifinal against Ridgeview. The Lady Wolfpack eliminated Virginia High 6-1 on Monday.

The Lady Blue Devils (13-11-1) lose five seniors, including the entire starting outfield and the starting first baseman.

However, the future remains bright because the rest of the infield comprises freshmen and sophomores, and Monday’s starting pitcher — Kate Pendleton — is a junior and pitched well, striking out five.

“These seniors have done a lot,” Noe said. “They’ve been to the postseason three out of four years and they’ve won conference twice. I never had to worry about them off the field because they were all good students and they were all great leaders.”