Leader Blues

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

SPORTS>>Cabot and Beebe win two, lose one

By JASON KING
Leader sportswriter

Cabot and Beebe took part in the annual Mt. Saint Mary’s tournament in Little Rock over the weekend, with both teams posting 2-1 records for the three-day event.

The Beebe Lady Badgers started out tournament play with a 3-0 shutout over Clarksville. Callie Mahoney was the winning pitcher for the Lady Badgers, allowing two hits while striking out six batters. Ashley Watkins took the mound for the second game against Conway on Saturday. The junior threw well, giving up only three hits, but the Lady Wampus Cats made their own luck in the game with a squeeze play in the third inning that would score what ended up as the winning run.

Beebe played its final game in the consolation bracket against Atkins, beating the Lady Devils 8-1. Mahoney again pitched a two-hitter for the Lady Badgers, while striking out eight batters.

Offensively, the Lady Badgers had solid efforts from several different players throughout the tourney. Senior Brandi Birkhalter had a 2 for 3 performance at the plate against Clarksville, and went 1 for 2 against Atkins. Chelsea Sanders came away with two RBIs in the opener when she doubled to left field.

Ashley Watkins went 2 for 3 with a double against Atkins, while Emily Bass was 2 for 3 with a triple. “We have a lot of basketball players in our lineup,” Lady Badgers coach Terry Flenor said. “We didn’t get them back until last week. That’s one of the reasons we wanted to come and play in this tournament, so we could get some games in before we have to start our conference schedule. I feel like we competed pretty well, obviously we would have liked to gone further, but I was satisfied.”
The Lady Panthers didn’t get to the finals, but did improve their record to a winning one with a 2-1 overall performance in the tourney. Cabot edged out Malvern 1-0 in a defensive struggle in the opening round on Friday, before beating Sylvan Hills 6-0 on Saturday. With a three-game guarantee in the tournament, the Lady Panthers ended their run in the third game with a close 3-2 loss to the Vilonia Lady Eagles.

“It was kind of a strange bracket,” Lady Panthers coach Becky Steward said. “Because you had a three-game guarantee, But if you won the first two and lost your third one it was too bad, so sad. It was a good tournament, though; there were a lot of quality teams there. We played pretty good up until the third game, and then we just did not execute defensively.”

Sophomore pitcher Cheri Barfield had a good tournament from the mound, throwing one-hitters in the first two games. She had three strikeouts against Malvern and four against Sylvan Hills, but took the loss to Vilonia in game three. Steward was especially pleased with her young hurler’s performance in the opener.

“She may have only had three strikeouts against them,” Steward said. “But Malvern is known for their short game; they put the ball in play. So for her to only allow one hit against a team like that is pretty good work.”

The two wins and one loss in the tournament gives the Lady Panthers a record of 3-2. Cabot kicked off league play by hosting Mt. Saint Mary in 7A-Central Conference action yesterday evening after Leader deadlines, and will host North Little Rock in another conference matchup on Friday.