Central softball’s “Do what we do” philosphy was in full mode Wednesday in its District 6-AA winners-bracket final. What the Lady Purple Pounders did was cruise past East Hamilton 8-0 in the high school softball tournament at Warner Park.
Central (24-12) advances to today’s championship at Frost Stadium scheduled to start at 7 p.m. The Lady Pounders have also clinched a spot in the Region 3 tournament, which is set to begin Monday.
East Hamilton (13-16) plays Hixson this afternoon at 5 at Frost with the winner moving to the final and earning the district’s other region berth. The Lady Wildcats edged East Ridge 6-5 in a losers-bracket game Wednesday.
Central coach LeeAnne Shurette said she was proud of the concentration her players showed in all phases of the game.
“There’s so much going on at school right now, you have to try to get everybody focused on the game. ‘Do what we do’ means no excuses, no explanations,” Shurette said. “If we take care of our business, we’ll be all right. We don’t want to get caught up in what the other team is trying to do.”
Catcher Hannah Powell was Central’s catalyst Wednesday. She went 4-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs, and aided Chasidy Ainslie’s six-hitter by picking a runner off second in the fifth inning and another off first in the sixth.
“Hannah played a great game, behind the plate and hitting the ball,” Shurette said. “Cha pitched a really good game and our defense was good, too.”
Sara Walker added a 2-for-3 effort that included a double and two RBIs. Brooke Eller was 2-for-3, Brook Womack was 2-for-4 with a double and each scored twice.
East Hamilton coach Holly Hamilton hopes the “rude awakening” provokes her team to rebound today.
“I hate to say it, but I think we just kind of laid down,” Hamilton said. “We had errors. We didn’t get hits with runners on base. We got picked off. We did everything you could do to give a team a win.”
Amber Phillips and Shaliyah Geathers each went 2-for-3 for the Lady Hurricanes. One of Phillips’ hits was a double.
Kelley Smiddie is a sports writer who has worked at the Times Free Press for 12 years. He covers high school sports and softball. Kelley’s hometown is Chattanooga, and he graduated from Brainerd High School and graduated Chattanooga State and UTC. Contact Kelley at 423-757-6653 or email@example.com.