Herb & Metal too much for All-State

By Marvin Birchfield

   The Elizabethton Herb & Metal girls team kept their undefeated season intact in Little League Softball action on Saturday by a final of 22-11 over All-State.
   "We were able to get a lot of young kids in today, and this gives them a chance to gain some experience," said Grindstaff Chevrolet coach Shannon Smith.
   Instead of being in good hands, All-State was short-handed during the game, forced to play with eight players and just two in the outfield.
   Elizabethton dominated the first three and a half frames by opening up a lead of 22-0.
   "The younger kids are getting out there and learning the positions, and we are just working on the minds right now and knowing what to do by being ready," said Smith.
   Three runs were scored in the first inning, with first one coming on a double from Kyla Jones to center field, bringing home Summer Smith.
   An overthrown ball from the catcher to the pitcher allowed Smith to score, and an infield single from Courtney Surcey drove in Heather Hughes.
   Eight more runs came in the second frame after several hits were made and numerous errors occurred.
   A passed ball scored Brittney Stines to start the frame, and a throw from the catcher that went past the pitcher enabled Leslie Guinn to cross the plate for the final run of the inning.
   Herb & Metal added 11 more runs in the top of the third as hits and errors accumulated against All-State.
   All-State was able to get itself on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third, due to a pitching change that created several walks to bring in eight runs.
   "We got the opportunity to throw two young pitchers in there, and they did OK by getting us out of the innings," said Smith.
   The first hits of the night didn't come until the final inning of play for All-State, when Cierra Hale smashed a triple to left field, scoring Lydia Carr.
   Whitney Vines added a run on a steal to home, and a rip up the middle from Whitney Clark drove-in Whitney Forbes.
   Smith is credited with the win for Herb & Metal, while Brittney Sproles receives the loss.
   P&W Muffler 13
   Grindstaff Chevrolet 14
   Grindstaff Chevrolet was able to comeback after trailing by as many as eight runs to squeak out a one-run victory.
   P&W went up by a score of 12-4 after the top of the second frame, but Grindstaff rallied to take 14-12 lead by the end of the fourth.
   With one last chance in the fifth, P&W managed to get a run, but with two outs a player that left the game early ended its opportunity of extending the contest.
   Kelly Culler went three for three at bat for Grindstaff, while Leah Henson had two inside-the-park home runs.
   Ashley May picks up the win for Grindstaff in her first pitching debut, as Jessica Yates is handed the loss.