'Betsy storms from behind to beat Jonesborough

By Wes Holtsclaw

   It was a must-win situation for the Elizabethton National Little League 9-10 year-old girls softball all-star squad.
   In their contest against Jonesborough Thursday night, National trailed throughout much of the game, but rallied back as a team to win a 21-12 decision and advance forward in the District 5 tournament.
   National opened with a pair of singles from Cara Bowling and Chelsea Bowling. Chelsie Wagner backed them up with a two-run double to take a quick 2-0 lead.
   Jonesborough got down early with two outs, but an errored shot from Leah Rose scored Cynthia Harkal. Carrie Johnson walked to set up Raven Wilson, who singled across two runs to take their first lead of the game.
   They kept it up in the second inning after Harkal got on with an errored shot, stealing her way around the bases with a stolen run. Rachel Williams followed up with a single, scoring on a wild throw to take a 5-2 lead.
   Elizabethton struck back with a single from Chelsea Bowling, before a Wagner RBI single. Lydia Carr had a nice hit for National, before RBI hits from Ashlie Wagner and Kristin Powell to tie the game at 5-5.
   Six walks helped Jonesborough put four runs onto the board in the third inning, as Raven Wilson, Brianna Brumit, Shauna Thurman and Samantha Davis crossed the plate with a 9-5 lead.
   Elizabethton's momentum was wrecked after that inning, but it quickly built it back up with a solid offensive fourth inning.
   Cara and Chelsea Bowling got on with a walk and fielder's choice before four RBI singles from Wagner, Amanda Schultz, Carr and Wagner.
   Powell stepped up with a big two-run single before Cara Bowling drove in Stephanie Egeler to give 'Betsy a 13-9 lead.
   Raven Wilson walked for Jonesborough in the fourth, stealing her way around the bases to earn her squad's lone run in the inning, trailing 13-10.
   National kept it coming in the fifth inning with a single from Schultz, followed by four consecutive walks. Cara Bowling singled across two runs before Chelsea Bowling hammered a three-run homer to give the team a 20-10 lead on its home field.
   Elizabethton wanted to hold Jonesborough for the quick win, but the traveling squad wouldn't have it. A pair of walks to Williams and Sarah Trent led to scores after a Carrie Johnson single to close the gap at 20-12.
   National garnered another run in the sixth inning when Cara Bowling singled across Wagner, and held Jonesborough scoreless in the sixth to wind out the 21-12 victory.
   Cara Bowling led Elizabethton with four hits and took the win from the mound, while Chelsea Bowling and Schultz added three hits apiece.
   Nobody earned more than a hit on the Jonesborough squad, which had a combined four runs in the contest.