In what turned out to be one of the best softball games all season, the Alba-Golden Lady Panthers handed the Mineola Lady Jackets their only loss, 6-5, in district play last Tuesday evening in Mineola.
The matchup between the Lady Panthers and Lady Jackets had plenty of fans on hand from both sides in what has regularly become a great school rivalry in Wood County.
In the two team’s previous matchup Mineola took over late to win, however in last week’s game it was Alba-Golden who got off to a hot start and held on late earning the only victory over the Lady Jackets this district season.
In the first inning the Lady Panthers got two runners on base with a base hit and a bunt. A-G scored two run in the first inning and another two runs using a similar strategy in the second inning giving them a 4-0 lead.
Through the first two innings Mineola struggled mightily fielding ground balls and A-G base-runners beat throws to first base with regularity early on. On offense Mineola left two runners stranded in the first inning and went scoreless until the fourth inning when the Lady Jackets scored two run. A-G answered back as they scored two runs in the fifth inning giving them a 6-2 lead. Mineola answered scoring another three runs in the fifth inning cutting A-G’s lead to 6-5.
However Mineola was unable to score again as the Lady Panthers won by a single run.
A-G was led by Laynie Culp, Macie Pendergrass and Ashlyn Rodgers who each had two hits apiece. Culp also had two RBI, while Pendergrass and Rodgers had one RBI apiece.
Bralee Littlejohn pitched all seven innings for the Lady Panthers as she allowed eight hits, five runs and struck out three Mineola batters.
Anna Westberry pitched all seven innings for the Lady Jackets as she struck out nine batters, gave up seven hits and allowed six runs.
With the win A-G moved in to a three way tie for second place at 8-4 in district while Mineola wins the district with an 11-1 record.
Both teams are scheduled to play their first round UIL playoffs this week. Alba-Golden will face Sunnyvale at Quinlan Ford High School on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. Mineola will play Dallas Madison High School at Greenville High School, first pitch is set for 6:30 p.m.