By Tim Chambers
ERWIN—Heavy rains came on Friday and halted the game between Johnson County and Happy Valley with the Warriors leading 5-4 after one. The Tribe would continue their red hot hitting on Monday while the Longhorns couldn’t dent the scoreboard another time.
Happy Valley used a six-run third to eliminate the Longhorns 13-4 in the District 1-AA softball tournament played at Unicoi County High School.
The Warriors are now 8-18 on the season. Johnson County ends their 2017 campaign at 5-15.
The Warriors had taken a 5-0 lead on Friday in the first, only to see the Lady Horns bounce back to pull within one.
Three walks led to a pair of runs, then Marley Eggers roped a two-run homer to cut the deficit to one.
It appeared as if the Lady Longhorns left their bats at home on Monday.
They managed only three hits over the next six innings, singles by Lindsey Wills and Brittney Brooks and Alexis Hendley’s double.
Happy Valley put the game away by scoring six times in the third inning. The mammoth blow was a three-run homer by Emily Whitaker over the right field fence that made it 11-4.
The Longhorns could never mount a serious threat off Happy Valley’s ace Bailey Hardin. The crafty righty fanned eight batters and walked only one while going the distance to earn the win.
Whitaker drove in three runs, going 2-3 with three runs scored for the Warriors. Kaitlyn Roberts had a pair of hits and scored three times. Kaitlyn Simerly provided four RBI’s and Claire Johnson had two.
Wills, Brittney Brooks, Hendley and Hannah Brooks had the only hits in the game for the Lady Longhorns.
Perhaps one Lady Longhorn said it best upon her departure for the field.
“Thank God it’s finally over,” as she kicked her bat bag. “We been beaten on more times than a punching bag.”
That pretty much summed up a dismal year that did include wins over Elizabethton and Happy Valley
Happy Valley 516 001 0 — 13 7 2
Johnson Co. 400 000 0 — 4 5 4
WP—Bailey Hardin, LP—H. Brooks