Contributed by Brian Schooley
The Prattville varsity softball team traveled to Gulf Shores over Spring Break to compete in the Gulf Coast Classic III and ended the tournament tied for fifth place out of 58 teams. The Lady Lions went 6-2 during the week.
In pool play, Prattville got off to a rocky start as they fell in the opener 5-1 to Pisgah. They rebounded well by knocking off another tough opponent, Hatton, 3-2. Ty Wilson scored twice, and after a Pyper Castro double, Kensley Jarman drove her home with a fielder’s choice ground out. Kaelyn Campbell scattered four hits and earned the win.
Next up was 7A rival Thompson. The teams tied earlier in the year, but this time, Prattville emerged with a 4-1 victory. The Lions broke out of a tie game in the final inning by posting three runs. They loaded the bases on a Campbell walk, a Gracie Pittman single, and another walk to Jessie Adams. Aliyah Hamilton and Anna Schooley earned RBIs on walks, and Wilson drove in the final run. Campbell again scattered four hits and earned her second win of the tournament. Prattville ended pool play with a solid 8-2 victory over Guntersville. Campbell led the offense with three hits, and winning pitcher Maddie Ray Coker helped her own cause with a single and a triple. Wilson added a pair of singles.
The Lady Lions were seeded eighth in bracket play and made quick work of Minor in the opening round 15-0. Coker threw a no hitter in a game shortened due to the mercy run rule. Pittman launched a two-run homer to lead the offense. Caroline Mills, Castro, and Coker each had two hits, while Miracle Johnson and Schooley both walked three times. Jordan Harlow and Eavie Lou Polk also reached based safely two times. Next up was Central-Phenix City. Still stinging from an 8-2 defeat to the Red Devils two weeks earlier, Prattville powered past Central 6-3. The Lady Lions pounded out 9 hits, led by Wilson, Campbell, Pittman, and Hamilton with two hits apiece. Winning pitcher Melissa Townsend added an RBI single.
In the third round, Campbell threw a 3-hit shutout to lead Prattville past Alexandria 4-0. Campbell added an RBI double to help her cause. Wilson and Castro each had two hits, while Townsend tripled down the right field line. Adams, Hamilton, and Polk added singles. The win moved the Lady Lions to the quarter finals against Oakland High School, a team out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Prattville took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the first inning on Campbell’s two-run homer, but that would be the Lady Lions only runs. Prattville was playing its fourth straight game without a break and ran out of gas. Oakland pushed four runs across the plate in the third inning and would add three more in the fourth. The Patriots also played outstanding defense to thwart any potential Prattville rallies and ended up winning the ball game 8-2. Oakland finished in second place in the tournament.