Lady Tigers defeat Lady Lobos in final home game match-up

Lady Tigers defeat the Longview Lady Lobos 8-5 on senior night


Photo by Ashley Tyson

Sophomore Braley Turner slides into third during the Longview game.

With their last game against this team ending in a seventh inning loss, the Lady Tigers came into their senior night itching for revenge. That’s exactly what they got when they sent the Longview Lobos home with their tails between their legs, beating them 8-5.

The senior night game began with hugs and gifts exchanged between the team and its three seniors: catcher Kallie Phillips, first baseman Alexandria Harris and right fielder Reagan Bevers. The Lady Tigers started out shaky, but they turned everything around in the fourth and fifth innings, making the perfect ending for their senior night game.

For the first three innings, the game looked pretty grim for the Lady Tigers. The first run, home stolen by Longview on a wild pitch, set the tone for the first half of the game. By the end of the third inning, the Lobos had four runs on the board while the Lady Tigers count remained scoreless.

“When we were behind, it was still early,” junior shortstop Chealsea Slider said. “I knew we had some time left to hit and score. I felt confident that we would do what we needed to win.”

Despite the beginning, everything turned around for the Lady Tigers during the fourth inning. The Longview Lobos scored no runs while batting, and then the Lady Tigers began their impressive comeback.

Junior Molly Crouch stole both second and third bases in the bottom of the fourth inning, beginning the Tiger’s rally. This achievement was trumped when Phillips stole home plate on a botched pitch and catcher mistake by Longview, finally putting some runs on Texas High’s half of the board. The Lady Tigers continued to earn themselves three more runs, tying the game up at 4-4.

“That was the best part,” said Phillips. “We knew we had to battle back, and that’s exactly what we did.”

Longview’s efforts to regain the lead in the top of the fifth inning were in vain. Before a single run, the Lady Tigers caught three hits. The final, a diving catch made by Slider, set off an eruption of cheers from the stands.

“I didn’t think I caught it to begin with,” Slider said. “When I did I couldn’t believe it. I just thought ‘whoa, I caught the ball.’”

This catch ended the Lobos batting and let the Lady Tigers step back up to the plate. Phillips shined again with a bullet ground ball past the right shortstop. A fumbled catch attempt gave both sophomore left fielder Kenzie Dickson and freshman centerfielder and pitcher Ashley Wyrick time to make it home, bumping the Texas High score up to 6.

Immediately after, the Lobos pitcher hit Slider and then served five balls to sophomore third baseman Braley Turner, leaving the bases loaded for Harris to step up to the plate. A ground ball fumbled by the Longview first baseman gave just enough time for Phillips and Slider to make it home. Turner was safe on third with an impressive slide and Harris made it to first. The fifth inning finished with the Lady Tigers ahead, 8 runs to 4.

In the sixth inning, the umpire awarded a walk from third to home on a mistake by the second Texas High pitcher, Wyrick, but that was the final point for the Lobos. No more runs were scored by the Lady Tigers in the sixth and seventh innings either, wrapping up the game with a final score of Lady Tigers 8, Lady Lobos 5.

“The game was absolutely amazing,” Harris said. “This team challenged us every second. It was a great way to end the seniors’ season.”

Coupled with the joy of the win was the bittersweet realization that this was the senior’s last home game. Only two games, both away, remain for the Lady Tigers district season: Pine Tree and Marshall. The end of the season will mean a hard goodbye for the seniors.
“I’ve grown close to a lot of girls,” Bevers said. “I’ll have friendships with them forever. We’re not just friends. We’re family.”