MONTGOMERY No. 4 Cherokee County will need to get on a winning roll today for the Warriors to bring home a state softball title.
The Warriors advanced to the second day of the Class 4A Alabama High School Athletic Association state softball tournament after going 2-1 Thursday.
Winning two games today puts Cherokee County in championship round where the Warriors need to win two more games to secure a blue trophy.
The Warriors (42-11) opened the tournament with a 7-1 win over Dadeville before falling to Alabama Christian 9-8. Cherokee County then beat Central-Florence 7-0 in the loser¹s bracket to survive and play in the tournament¹s final games today beginning at 10:30 a.m.
Cherokee County had little trouble getting past Central-Florence, scoring three runs in the first and sixth and adding another in the seventh.
Lauren Millsaps earned the win, allowing four hits and striking out two in the complete-game effort. She helped her own cause at the plate, going 2 for 4 with two runs, an RBI and a stolen base.
Kaitlyn Griffith went 1 for 3 with two runs scored and a pair of stolen bases, Madison Millsaps went 1 for 3 with a run scored and notched an RBI on a sacrifice bunt. Candace Blanchard, Molly Brewer and Tori Davis had hits, while Cayla Machleit had two RBI.
Cherokee County fell into the losers¹ bracket with the loss to No. 3 Alabama
The winning run scored in the top of the seventh when Jacqui Wynn crossed the plate on a Cherokee County error. The Warriors got the leadoff batter on base in the bottom of the seventh, but three straight ground outs ended the game.
Cherokee County fought to make it a close game, as the Warriors trailed 6-0 after McKenzie Kilpatrick¹s two-run homer in the top of the fifth.
Cherokee County rallied in the bottom of the frame as Griffith finally put the Warriors on the board with a two-RBI double that scored Audra Bradley and Darbie Rosser. After Madison Millsaps singled, Lauren Millsaps came through with a two-RBI double of her own and later scored on Molly Brewer's RBI single to pull within 6-5.
In the sixth, Brooklyn Goodman¹s two-RBI single sent home Liz Taylor and Rachel Eagerton to give Alabama Christian an 8-5 lead before Cherokee County tied the game at 8 heading into the seventh. In the bottom of the sixth, Lauren Millsaps ripped her second two-RBI double of the game and scored another run when Blanchard singled her home.
Lauren Millsaps took the loss, while Liz Taylor picked up the win for Alabama Christian. At the plate, Lauren Millsaps was 3 for 4 with four RBI and two runs scored.
Cherokee County breezed past Dadeville in the tournament's opening game. Griffith went 2 for 3 with a double and scored three runs. Her RBI single in the fourth scored Davis and put the Warriors ahead 4-0. Madison Millsaps then knocked home Rosser before Lauren Millsaps reached on a fielder's choice and scored Griffith. Cherokee County scored its final run in the fifth when Bradley touched home after a Dadeville error.
Earlier in the game, Lauren Millsaps singled home Griffith in the first and Brewer's two-RBI single in third scored Griffth and Blanchard.