It was one of five games the Ringgold High School softball team played this weekend at the SCORE International tournament at Warner Park. Though the 4-0 win Saturday morning against Blessed Trinity won't mean much in the grand scheme of things, its significance wasn't lost on the Lady Tigers.
Ringgold (17-4) dominated the state's No. 3 Class AAA team, out-hitting the Lady Titans 9-1 and making several superb defensive plays. Senior pitcher Brittany Portwood gave up a single to Blessed Trinity's first hitter and allowed only two walks the rest of the way.
"It was a great win," said Ringgold coach Rachel Hodge, who had scolded her team after a lackluster region loss this past week. "Blessed Trinity is a highly ranked team and we could very well see them again.
"Brittany had a great game, and she is one of the hardest-working athletes on and off the field. She has stepped up as a hitter this year and has always worked relentlessly as a pitcher. I'm very proud of her."
The Lady Tigers had several early chances against Blessed Trinity ace Mary Bryce Pring but left a runner at second base in the third inning, a runner at third in the fourth and the bases loaded without a score in the fifth. They finally broke through in the sixth when Chandler Turner led off with a double and scored on a two-base error. Jessica Goldsmith made it 2-0 with a perfect squeeze bunt two batters later.
Portwood, who was 3-for-3 at the plate, singled to lead off the seventh and scored along with Taylor Chadwick on Turner's second double of the game for a 4-0 lead.
"That was a great win," Portwood said. "I knew if we stayed strong defensively we would have a chance. This can give us a big boost, especially after our loss last week."
Ringgold, which defeated Oklahoma power Mustang and Dalton Friday, ended the tournament Saturday by edging Mount Pisgah 8-7 and playing Buford.
Lindsey Young is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who started work at the Chattanooga News-Free Press 24 years ago. He covers the Northwest Georgia prep beat and NASCAR. Lindsey’s hometown is Ringgold, Ga., and he graduated from Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School. He received an associate’s degree from Dalton Junior College (now Dalton State) and a bachelor’s degree in communications from UTC. He has won several writing awards, including two Tennessee Sports ...