The Monticello Lady Billies softball season came to an end at the 4A State Softball Championship Tournament after a first round loss to the Farmington Lady Cardinals.
Scheduled to play on Thursday, May 11, in Lonoke, a common story for this year’s school; sports season continued to be an issue as the weather forced the first round contest to be rescheduled to Friday after several time reschedules on Thursday.
With the games scheduled for Friday, the location would be moved from Lonoke to Cabot with the start time also being pushed back to mid afternoon.
Entering as the visitor on the tournament bracket with Farmington being the home team, the Lady Billies would bat first in the contest and would open the contest with two consecutive strikeouts before Alaina Lyle recorded a single, but a third strikeout would leave Lyle stranded at first.
Lyle would be the starting pitcher for the Lady Billies and would hold Farmington scoreless in the bottom half of the inning.
Kiley Lane led off with a single to start off the top of the second inning followed by a single by Anna Morgan, but Farmington would get a double-play and a ground out to end the inning.
Farmington would lead off with a single in the bottom of the inning with Monticello recording two consecutive outs, but a single would give the Lady Cardinals a 1-0 lead before Monticello recorded the final out of the inning.
Skylar Burns would lead off the top of the third inning with a single and would advance to second on an error. Burns advanced to third on a ground out by Kate Morgan followed by a strikeout for the second out of the inning.
Farmington would put Lyle on base before getting the third out stranding Burns at third.
Farmington extended their lead to 2-0 after two lead off singles and a single after a fielder’s choice.
Audrey Howard would lead off the top of the fourth inning with a single followed by Lane reaching on an error and a walk to Anna Morgan to load the bases but Farmington would record three consecutive outs to leave the Lady Billie runners on the base paths.
Farmington would add a third run in the bottom of the inning on a walk, a single and a walk. The runner would score on a passed ball for a 3-0 lead.
Kate Morgan led off the top of the fifth inning with a single but would be out on a fielder’s choice followed by Farmington turning a double-play to end the inning.
Farmington would increase their lead to 6-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning after adding two runs in the inning.
Monticello had one runner in the top of the sixth inning after Lane reached on an error, but Farmington would close the inning with Lane stranded on first.
Farmington put the game away in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Needing four runs to put the run-rule into play, Farmington would get the runs needed to eliminate the Lady Billies for the 4A State Tournament with a 10-0 win.
For the Lady Billies, Alaina Lyle would pitch 3.1 innings in the loss allowing five runs on seven hits with three runs being earned, striking out one and walking four.
Lyle was relieved by Ashlynn Snow for .1 of an inning, walking the only batter she faced before being relieved by Addi Frazer who got in an inning of work, allowing five runs on two hits with four runs being earned with three walks.
As a team, the Lady Billies were 6 for 23 with no runs, two walks, and with five batters striking out.
Kate Morgan was 1 for 3, Alaina Lyle was 1 for 2 with a walk, Audrey Howard was 1 for 3, Kiley Lane was 1 for 3 but reached base on two errors, Anna Morgan was 1 for 3 with a walk, and Skylar Burns finished 1 for 3.
With the loss, the Lady Billies finished the season with an overall record of 22-4 with a 4A-8 Conference Championship, a fourth place finish at the 4A South Regional Tournament to qualify for the 4A State Championship Tournament for the first time since the 2015 season.
The Lady Billies showed their power during the season connecting on 26 home runs for the season with Alaina Lyle and Kiley Lane leading in the statistic with six each followed by Audrey Howard, Medline Stanley, and Anna Morgan all connecting for four each, and Addi Frazer hitting two on the season.
Alaina Lyle saw the majority of the time in the circle for the Lady Billies pitching 91.2 inning recording 140 strikeouts with an earned run average of 1.29.
Lyle also led the Lady Billie with a .592 batting average followed by Frazer with a .398 average with Kate Morgan having a .370 batting average and Howard with .367.
Addi Frazer recorded 44 innings pitched with 378 strikeouts and an earned run average of 1.90.
Ashlynn Snow pitched 23 innings on the season recording 25 strikeouts with an earned run average of 3.04.
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