Non-school softball team plays in high school invitational

Chuck Hayes Democrat Sports
Booneville's Sara Ulmer runs out an infield hit in the fourth inning of the non-school team's game against Perryville on Sunday. Ulmer was 2-for-2 in the game and drove in the tying run in the fifth inning.

The Booneville non-school softball team played in the Arkansas High School Invitational over the weekend in Russellville.

After a loss to Lamar on Saturday, They had a thrilling game with Perryville on Sunday in which they came back from three runs down with two outs in the top of the fifth inning to take the lead. However, Perryville came back and scored two runs in the bottom half of the inning to win it, 8-7.

The games in the tournament were five innings in length.

Though the results of the games did not work out, it did give the team a chance to continue working toward next school season, whenever that may be. It also afforded an opportunity for closure for seniors Shelby Posey and Baylee Moses. Both of them reached base in their final time at bat for Booneville.

Attention now turns to next season, and coach Ronnie Denton is looking for competitiveness out of his team as they move to a new conference. He cited his two seniors as examples that every girl on the team needs to follow for next season.

Lamar 4 Booneville 0

Shelby Posey singled with two out in the top of the first inning but slipped on the infield dirt as she was rounding the bag and was tagged out. That turned out to be a microcosm of what was to happen as Lamar scored three runs without benefit of a hit in the bottom of the inning. Walks, errors and passed balls contributed to the Lamar uprising.

After a quiet second inning, Baylee Moses and Brylee Washburn both hit rockets to center field in the third inning, but the Lamar centerfielder was up to the task. Booneville’s defense got them out of trouble in the bottom of that ending when Lakyn Sanders, attempting to advance to third after a dropped throw, was thrown out at third by Sara Ulmer with shortstop Layla Byrum applying the tag. The next batter flied out to Moses in center to end the threat.

But Booneville could not get anything going off Lamar hurler Bailee Cowell and Lamar would add another run in the fourth inning. Booneville would mount a threat in the fifth inning as Brooke Turner reached on an error. Joleigh Tate forced out courtesy runner Hayley Lunsford at second before Moses got an infield single. On the play, Sanders overthrew first and the runners each advanced a base, but Cowell retired the next batter to end the game.

Posey and Moses, the two seniors, got the only two Booneville hits in the game. Turner allowed only one earned run, settling down after walking three batters in the first inning.

Perryville 8 Booneville 7

Booneville wasted no time getting runs on the board in the first inning. With one out, Leigh Swint rifled a double into the left-field corner. Two wild pitches later, Booneville had their first run. The next two batters, Shelby Posey and Brooke Turner, each reached base when the Perryville third baseman overthrew first base on a grounder. The next two batters, Shelby Posey and Brooke Turner, both reached when the Perryville third baseman overthrew first base on ground balls. Posey scored on a grounder by Joleigh Tate but on ball four to Sara Ulmer, Hayley Lunsford, Who is running for Turner, was retired trying to score after the ball temporarily got away from the Perryville catcher.

Perryville answered with four runs in the bottom of the inning on three walks, two doubles and a wild pitch. It could have gotten worse except that Perryville’s Mallory Hawkins, trying to go to third after reaching on a throwing error, was thrown out at third by Tate. Turner continued to have problems with her control and she was relieved by Emily Suttles.

After a walk to Alyssa Rudolph with a runner on third, she stole second. But that was supposed to have been part of a double steal and the runner from third didn’t move; Rudolph rounded the bag too far and was caught in rundown and eventually retired before the runner from third crossed the plate.

Perryville would add another run in the second inning but Booneville got that one back in the third. Byrum singled, stole second and eventually scored after two ground outs with Posey getting the RBI. Booneville would threaten again in the fourth after Moses walked and scooted all the way to third on a wild pitch, but Perryville pitcher Shelby Powell got out of the jam.

Perryville added what looked to be an insurance run in the bottom of the fourth. Byrum singled with one out in the fifth but Swint was retired. Posey, though, ripped a double to plate Byrum but then Turner struck out, seemingly ending the game. But the ball got away from the catcher far enough for Turner to reach first safely, with Posey taking third.

Lunsford came on to run for her and on the next pitch, Tate hit one into no man’s land between the shortstop and the third baseman, scoring Posey. Then on the pitch after that, Ulmer dropped one into short right field to score Lunsford. Tate took third on the hit and scored on a wild pitch, giving Booneville the lead. Moses followed with a walk and took second on indifference but Booneville could not get the runners across.

Suttles, who had been going along well, suddenly had her control go away as she walked two of the first three batters, with another reaching on an infield hit. With the bases loaded, Turner returned to the circle, but two walks later the game was over.

Byrum was 2-for-3 and she and Posey each scored twice; Posey and Tate each had two RBIs while Ulmer was 2-for-2 with an RBI.