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Lady Jackets force winner-take-all title game

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Kingston wins twice Thursday to reach Region 2-AA Tournament

By Goose Lindsay

 

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The Kingston Lady Yellow Jackets are headed to next week's Region 2-AA Tournament.

The only question left to answer is whether they'll be on the road or at home and that will be answered Friday evening at 5:30 p.m. as Ronnie Ladd's squad travels to Alcoa with the District 4-AA Tournament championship on the line.

The Lady Jackets forced a winner-take-all championship game with Alcoa by knocking off the Lady Tornadoes Thursday evening, 6-2.

Kingston entered Thursday's contest needing to win twice to force Friday's championship game.

The first win came with an 11-1 victory over Christian Academy of Knoxville (CAK). That victory was huge because it secured the Lady Jackets a berth in Monday's Region 2-AA Tournament.

By defeating the Lady Warriors, Kingston moved on to face Alcoa. Alcoa had defeated Kingston 6-5 on Wednesday and were one win away from capturing the title, but Kingston had other ideas as they picked up the 6-2 victory.

Kingston opened tournament play Tuesday with a 3-0 victory over CAK.

If Kingston wins Friday, they will host Carter on Monday in the opening round or the region tourney. A loss means Kingston will play Gibbs on the road.

Kingston 3 CAK 0

Tuesday's opener was a tough one for the Lady Jackets as it wasn't until the sixth inning that Kingston broke open a scoreless tie with three runs.

Sydney Spurgeon opened the sixth inning with a walk and she eventually scored after back-to-back two-out singles from Morgan Snow and Makisha Fuller. Snow and Fuller also scored as Kingston went on to the 3-0 victory.

Up until the sixth inning, Kingston had just three hits as T.J. Wicks doubled in the third inning while Snow and Mica Gaines picked up hits in the fourth inning.

Snow (2-3, 1 run) was the only player for Kingston with multiple hits on the day.

Gaines picked up the victory after firing a complete-game six-hitter with one walk and eight strikeouts past the Lady Warriors.

Alcoa 6 Kingston 5

The Lady Tornadoes sent the Lady Jackets to the loser's bracket Wednesday evening with a 6-5 victory.

Alcoa took the lead Wednesday with two runs in the bottom of the second inning, but Kingston would pull even with two runs in the top of the fifth inning and one more run in the fifth to take a 3-2 lead.

Gaines and Snow scored Kingston's runs in the inning while Stickrod, Fuller and Samantha Aycock also had hits in the frame for the Lady Jackets.

Wicks doubled and scored for Kingston in the fifth inning.

Kingston's lead didn't last long, however, as Alcoa scored two runs both the bottom of the fifth and sixth innings to take a 6-3 lead into the seventh inning.

The Lady Jackets rallied in the seventh inning as Wicks, Spurgeon, Stickrod and Snow all had singles to make the score 6-5, but Alcoa got out of the jam as Kingston left runners on second and third to end the game.

Stickrod (2-4), Fuller (3-3) and Wicks (2-3, 2B, 2 runs) had multiple hits for Kingston in the loss.

Kingston 11 CAK 1

Kingston bounced back from Wednesday's loss in fine fashion Thursday evening as the Lady Jackets run-ruled the Lady Warriors in six innings, 11-1.

CAK scored first in the top of the second inning, but that was all the good news for the Lady Warriors as Kingston took the lead for good with two runs in the bottom of the second inning. Kingston pretty much put the game away with five runs in the third inning and then the Lady Jackets kept adding to their total until back-to-back doubles from Snow and Fuller in the sixth inning ended the game.

Snow (2-3, 2B, 3 runs), Fuller (2-4, 2B, 3 RBIs, 2 runs), Katherine Butler (2-3, 2 2B, 3 RBIs) and Rachel Coffey (2-3, 2 RBIs) all had multiple hits for Kingston in the victory.

Gaines picked up the win after tossing a complete-game six-hitter with one walk and three strikeouts past the Lady Warriors.

Kingston 6 Alcoa 2

After dropping their first three games against Alcoa this season, Kingston finally figured out how to beat the Lady Tornadoes.

Neither team scored in the first two innings, but Kingston took the lead for good when Stickrod blasted a two-run homer to deep left field in the top of the third inning. Spurgeon singled earlier in the frame and scored on Stickrod's bomb.

Kingston made it 5-0 with three runs in the top of the fourth inning.

All three of the runs came with two outs as Coffey started the rally with a two-out single and she scored on a two-out double from Spurgeon. Gaines drove in Spurgeon when she reached on an error then Stickrod drove in her third run of the game with a single.

Kingston's final run of the game came in the top of the sixth inning as Anna Hamilton scored on a double from Gaines.

Alcoa avoided the shutout with two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Spurgeon (2-4, 2B, 1 RBI, 1run), Stickrod (2-4, HR, 3 RBIs, 1 run) and Fuller (2-4, 2B) all had multiple hits while Gaines picked up another complete-game victory in the circle.