BUCKLEYS CREEK — In Tuesday’s championship matchup between Pike Central and Belfry, strong fielding and consistent pitching helped the Lady Hawks pick up a 5-2 win and back-to-back 60th District championships.
The Lady Pirates came out ready to start the game off with a ding instead of a bang as Emily Deaton and Linzee Phillips both laid down beautiful picture perfect bunts. The pair scored on one of the two errors the Lady Hawks committed in the entire game.
Later in the third inning, Pike Central looked to cut the lead as Sydnee Lowe scored off of a Kayleigh Thomas double. Making the score 2-1 in the third in favor of the Lady Pirates.
Both teams struggled through the fourth and fifth innings.
Crunch time was approaching and it seemed that Belfry might have been able to hold of the Lady Hawks.
The sixth inning dawned new hope for the Lady Hawks as they exploded for three runs in the inning. Two of the runs were scored due to a Skylar Stumbo shot that was blasted to deep left center and brought in Makaylee Charles and Kaden Hess. Stumbo’s triple sparked something in her teammates and changed the whole perspective of the game.
Lowe was back up to bat for the Lady Hawks and was able to slice a ball into right field for a double giving Stumbo the call home. Making the score 4-2 with Pike Central looking to finish their already spectacular comeback.
In the seventh, Pike Central added to the lead when Baily Birchfield scored off a Maddie Vaughn double. The Lady Hawks held of the Lady Pirates in their last at bat to secure their second consecutive district title.
Thomas picked up the win on the mound for the Lady Hawks. She allowed two runs on four hits, while striking out four and not giving up a walk.
Rash suffered the loss on the mound for the Lady Pirates. She gave up five runs on eight hits, while striking out seven and walking four.
Pike Central (16-19) and Belfry (23-7) both advance to the 15th Region Tournament at Floyd Central.