Dale downs Stroud to reach 2A state title game
OKLAHOMA CITY – Dale head coach Andy Powell is still waiting on Addie Bell's 'A' game from the circle at the Class 2A State Fastpitch Softball Tournament.
Powell wasn't ready to give Bell the 'A' grade, but a B-plus sufficed Friday as the second-ranked Lady Pirates knocked off the sixth-ranked Stroud Lady Tigers, 7-3, in the semifinals at the ASA Hall of Fame Complex.
“I'm sticking with a B-plus. I give her an A-plus mentally. But I think she's got an 'A' game in her. I've seen her better,” said Powell.
Dale, 37-4, will face an old nemesis in Latta for the Class 2A state title Saturday at 4 p.m. on Field One. The Lady Panthers edged Silo, 5-4, in Friday's other semifinal contest.
Dale will be seeking its sixth state fastpitch crown after claiming titles in 2003, 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2018. The Lady Pirates lost to Silo in the 2019 finals.
Bell scattered nine hits, allowed just two earned runs, struck out four, surrendered only one walk and overcame two hit batsmen in working all seven innings for the win.
Offensively, she provided a lift to the offense by finishing with a 2-for-4 effort from the plate with three runs batted in as the Lady Pirates pounded out 16 hits in the game. Bell drove in the first run of the game with a single down the left field line, had a sacrifice fly in the third and singled to right in the sixth.
Bell was one of six Dale players to have multiple hits, but despite the offense, the Lady Pirates stranded 12 baserunners in the game as Stroud hurler Jadyn Young kept Dale in check.
“You have to tip your hat to Stroud. Their pitcher doesn't overpower you and she doesn't miss her spots. She's a bulldog,” Powell said.
Young struck out three and allowed just one walk from the circle for the Lady Tigers.
Sophomore Chayse Carman, the Lady Pirates' nine-hole hitter, was 3-for-4 from the plate while teammates Makenzy Herman, Sam Hartman, Karsen Griggs and Anna Hester each finished 2-for-4. Danyn Lang added a two-run single in the seventh to help Dale keep its distance.
Young, Skyla Baker and Kenlee Parrick collected two hits each for Stroud, which saw its season come to an end at 26-7.
Bell's single down the left-field line scored Herman for the first run after Herman was hit by the first pitch of the game.
The Lady Pirates added another run in the third after Madison Conley led off with a double to left-center and one out later, scored off Bell's sacrifice fly in foul territory deep in left to make it 2-0.
Dale upped the count to 3-0 in the fourth when Caram singled to left-center with one out, reached second on a passed ball, moved up to third on Herman's single and scored when an errant throw, trying to prevent Herman from stealing, sailed into right-center.
Another run was added in the fifth when Emilia Idleman led off with a single through the left side. Idleman stole second and moved to third on a shallow fly to right. Idleman then raced home on an error as Hartman was credited with an RBI on the play for a 4-0 Lady Pirate cushion.
Stroud got on the board in the bottom of the fifth on a run-scoring single from Emma Davis to make it 4-1.
But Bell's double to right led to her third RBI of the game to give Dale a 5-1 advantage.
The Lady Tigers picked up another single score in the bottom of the sixth off a Charley Coleman double down the right-field line to make it 5-2.
Three consecutive singles by Hester, Caram and Herman set the stage for Lang's two-run single to conclude the Dale scoring.
Stroud picked up its final tally when Parrick led off with a single and scored off an error in the outfield in the seventh.