Thompson goes 3-1 at Presidents Day Invitational behind strong batting performances

Published 10:45 pm Monday, February 19, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

By ANDREW SIMONSON | Sports Editor

ALABASTER – The Thompson Warriors kicked off the season with the Presidents Day Invitational tournament at home on Feb. 16-17, and they started what they hope will be a road to the state title with a 3-1 weekend.

The Warriors defeated Moody 13-0 and Oxford 7-1 on Friday, Feb. 16 before beating St. Clair County 12-0 on Saturday, Feb. 17 to rebound from a 3-1 loss to Mortimer Jordan earlier in the day.

Thompson started the tournament with a nine-run first inning against the Moody Blue Devils.

After a leadoff double and walk, Kelsey Burden scored a two-run double to make the score 2-0.

Lainey Williams then hit an RBI sacrifice fly two batters later to make the lead 3-0. Two batters later, Olivia Tindell hit an RBI double to plate two more runs.

Then, two batters after Tindell’s double, Alexandra Bauer scored an RBI single to increase the lead to 6-0. Keara Hall later took the score to 7-0 by securing an RBI sacrifice fly.

On the next play, Dailynn Motes added two more runs thanks to a line drive double, closing out the scoring in the first inning and leaving the score 9-0.

Moody recovered in the second inning and escaped with no runs, but the Warriors added a 10th run in the top of the third after Neely Davis crossed home plate during a double play.

That took Thompson into run-rule territory, but it added three more runs before the end of the game. A Blue Devils error in the top of the fourth led to the 11th run of the game and a two-run double from Hooks closed out the scoring at 13-0.

Kadyn Bush earned the win with four strikeouts in two innings while allowing just one hit and Kayla Haney secured the save with two innings and two strikeouts against two hits and a walk.

The Warriors continued the strong offensive day against the Oxford Yellow Jackets in the second game of the day.

Kelsey Burden crossed home plate in the bottom of the first inning off a Bush fly out into foul territory, which was the only run of the first two innings.

However, Oxford tied the game with a two-out RBI double in the top of the third, but that only triggered an avalanche from Thompson in the bottom of the frame.

The Warriors recovered from a leadoff ground out to earn a pair of singles and set up Motes for a two-run double to take a 3-1 lead.

Bush hit an RBI single on the next at-bat to extend the lead to three runs, and two batters later, Hooks closed out the scoring for the inning with an RBI single.

After holding the Yellow Jackets scoreless in the top of the fifth, Burden hit an RBI sacrifice fly to bring Hannah Hobbs home.

On the next pitch, Hall finished off the night with an inside-the-park home run to make the final score 7-1.

To start out the second day of the tournament, Mortimer Jordan plated three runs in the first inning, and while the Warriors scored one in the bottom of the frame, they couldn’t make up the difference the rest of the way and lost 3-1 to the Blue Devils.

However, Thompson bounced back in a big way with a 12-0 win over the St. Clair County Saints in the final game of the day on Saturday.

While the first inning came and went without any runs, a hit by pitch and back-to-back walks presented a perfect opportunity in the top of the second for the Warriors to get on the scoreboard.

Mallory Flournoy came up in the big spot with a bases-clearing RBI triple to make the score 3-0. She came home on the next pitch off an RBI groundout by Kayla Haney to increase the lead to four.

While that was all the scoring for that inning, Thompson got right to work in the top of the third with a leadoff walk and a Hobbs RBI single, which scored the fifth run of the day.

Hobbs then stole third and scored on a wild pitch, making the lead 6-0 and forcing a pitching change.

Then, with two runners on and nobody out, Motes hit a three-run home run to center field to take the lead to 9-0.

After two walks and a hit by pitch, the Warriors scored the final three runs of the day on three straight at-bats.

Tindell grounded into a fielder’s choice that scored a run and put Thompson in run-rule territory, Savanna Burnett hit an RBI groundout to make the score 11-0 and Williams scored the last run of the day on a pinch-hit RBI single, which wrapped up the 12-0 win.

The Warriors will return to action on Tuesday, Feb. 20 against Springville at home at 4:30 p.m.