Coach Boogie Grooms’ Lady Stags softball team was trailing 2-1 to Marlboro County in playoff action on May 5, and it looked like Berkeley might have to take a page out of the perennial Chicago Cubs’ playbook when it came to that first playoff win — wait til next year.
“I don’t think we came ready to play at the beginning,” Grooms said. “We came out very flat.”
But the Lady Stags rallied in the third inning to take advantage of some sloppy fielding and throwing by the Lady Bulldogs to take the lead and put the game away.
Marlboro County committed seven errors on the night. Of the 14 runs the Lady Stags scored, only two were earned.
A three-run third inning gave Berkeley a 4-2 lead it would not relinquish.
Olivia Hill reached on an error and advanced to third on the bad throw. Hill then scored on Lexi Samples’ base hit. Samples was thrown out at second trying to advance on the bad throw.
Jessica Stanley reached on an error when the Marlboro County centerfielder lost Stanley’s flyball in the late afternoon sun.
Stanley then scored on Blake Ponder’s double.
Ponder came around to score on Peyton Svagerko’s hit.
The Lady Stags put the game away with a six-run fourth inning highlighted by a two-RBI sacrifice fly by Brooklyn Stone which scored Hill from third and Samples all the way from second base.
Hits in the inning came from Samples, Stanley, Ponder, Svagerko and Hilton.
The Lady Stags pounded out 13 hits to support Stone in the pitcher’s circle. The tall righthander scattered seven hits and allowed four runs while striking out five.
Samples, Stanley, Ponder and Svagerko each had two hits to lead Berkeley. Samples and Stone each had three RBIs apiece, and Ponder drove in two runs to help lead the offense.
The Lady Stags took to the road on Wednesday, May 7 for a rematch with Socastee. The Lady Braves downed BHS 2-1 in the opening round of the playoffs on Friday, May 2.
“We hit the ball hard against Socastee but they caught everything we hit,” Grooms said. “We just couldn’t get the hits to fall that night.”