By Kevin Posival and Angel Verdejo
The Cove Herald
KILLEEN - The Lady Grey Wolves were close when they needed to be and opportunistic enough to win.
Despite seven errors and just two hits between the second and sixth innings, the Lady Grey Wolves trailed just 3-2 to Copperas Cove going into the bottom of the seventh inning.
Katie Quinn's RBI double tied the game and then the senior catcher scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch to give the Lady Grey Wolves a 4-3 win over Cove.
"I think the main thing that's working for us is they're just not giving up," Shoemaker coach Stacey Halim said. "Cove, they came in spurrts and their spurts were big, it's very easy to get mentally down like that ... the main thing with this team, as long as we stay mentally in it, the physical stuff will take care of itself."
While Shoemaker was trying to stay composed through its mid-game struggles, the Lady Bulldawgs were just trying to hit the ball.
Copperas Cove stranded 14 base runners (nine in scoring position) and twice left the bases loaded.
"We've got to get the ball in play," Cove coach Jim Lowery said. "If we hit the ball somewhere, you can't strike out with the bases loaded or runners at second and third, you've got to make them make a play and we didn't do that."
After giving up two runs and three hits in the first inning, Cove pitcher Kate Stephens all but shut down the Lady Grey Wolves until the seventh. She struck out two consecutive batters to get out of the first and allowed just two hits in the next five innings to buy the Lady Dawgs time to rally.
Megan Martel's RBI walk in the top of the fifth plated Courtney Kinzi for Cove's first run and the Lady Dawgs added two more in the sixth when Ashley Hartwell and Tiara Starns both scored on a passed ball.
"The problem is, you've got to play all seven," Lowery said. "One thing about it, as young as we are, we knew coming in that we're going to make some mistakes, we've just got to make sure those mistakes we make, we learn from. I'm not down on them. I know it wasn't do to lack of effort."
In the seventh, though, Stephens gave up back-to-back hits - a lead-off single by Brianna Davis and Quinn's double - and walked Chanelle Milam before throwing the wild 1-2 pitch to Jordan Hulin.
Cove falls to Groesbeck, beat San Antonio East Central (Saturday) - The Lady Bulldawgs had troubles with a stiff wind at the Taylor Tournament, falling to Groesbeck 5-3 before rallying for a 15-1 win over San Antonio East Central in three innings.
Groesbeck scored its run all in one inning, as the breeze pushed around four straight hits out of the Lady Dawgs' reach. Irene Espinoza doubled and had two RBIs for Cove. Against East Central, Ashley Hartwell went 4-for-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and picked up the win. Justine Hartwell was 3-for-3 with two RBIs, Espinoza finished 3-for-3 with two doubles and three RBIs.
Lady Dawgs sweep pool (Mar. 3) - Copperas Cove won its pool at the Taylor Tournament as Ashley Hartwell only made one out in seven plate appearance, tallying six hits to lead the Lady Bulldawgs to three wins. Cove beat Killeen (10-1), Taylor (5-4) and Burnet (4-0). Justine Hartwell went 5-for-8 on the day for Cove.