GRAND SALINE -- Carthage will have to pull off another two-game rally to reach next week's Class 4A softball state tournament.

The Lady Dawgs' bats were largely silenced by Krum starting pitcher Tristan Bridges in a two-hit shutout and a 5-0 loss in the first contest of their three-game Region II championship series. Up next is the potential swing game, or elimination game, 4 p.m. Saturday at Rockwall-Heath High School.

"She did great," Carthage coach Matt Folmar said. "We had a plan, and she pretty much demolished our plan. I've got to tip my hat to the kid. She only gave up two base hits. That's a great job, especially at this level in the playoffs."

Carthage's Kimberlyn Worsham attempts a fourth-inning safety squeeze to get Kayman Courtney home, but the ball was too low. Courtney was later tagged on taking home on a wild pitch.

Folmar's club put six players on the bags in total, but the Lady Dawgs (31-8-2) didn't get a runner into scoring position until after Krum (36-3) established the lead.

Lindsay Beutnagal recorded what held up as the game-winning hit with two outs in the top of the third through the left side of the infield. Maddie Goin scored on the play.

Bridges homered to center field in the fourth, Kelsie Roberts hit an RBI single in the sixth and two runners crossed the plate in the seventh on two errors and a hit.

Meanwhile, Bridges got through seven full innings of work on 93 pitches. She struck out six batters along the way.

Taylor Wills took the loss on 120 throws with nine hits allowed.

Carthage runners reached third base twice.

Leadoff hitter Kayman Courtney's first-pitch contact over second base in the fourth frame snapped Bridges' perfect game bid through three innings. Two sacrifice hits got Courtney to third base, but she got caught trying to take home on a wild pitch catcher Morgan Sebastian recovered to preserve a 2-0 lead.

The Lady Dawgs, down 3-0 in the sixth, left Addison Blissett and Carson Robertson in scoring position when the potential tying run grounded out to second base.

Dede Pope walked with two outs in the bottom seventh. Bridges landed a swinging strikeout on a 2-2 count to end the game the next at-bat.

All that being stated, Carthage was able to overcome giving up the series-opening game last week to Aubrey in the regional semifinal round of competition. It avenged a 5-4 loss on a Thursday with 12-1 and 5-0 victories two days later.

"I told them after the game that we were in the same boat last week," Folmar said. "I know we can do it. We're just going to have to make some adjustments at the plate and put the ball in play a little bit better. Their kids did a heck of a job putting the ball in play and playing defense. I thought, for the most part, we did a good job defensively and just need to do a better job at the plate."

The Lady Dawgs' seniors will participate in graduation ceremonies today before resuming the series.

Should Carthage win the 4 p.m. game Saturday, the decisive third game will be played 30 minutes afterward.

"We're going to practice," Folmar said. "We'll have half a day and get practice started around 1:45 p.m. They'll get out of practice with plenty of time to get ready for graduation. There are a lot of kids in the state of Texas that are going to get to graduate, but there aren't that many playing to go to Austin. Hopefully they understand the importance of what we're trying to do."

Krum's Lindsay Buetnagal crosses the plate in the sixth inning on a hit by Kelsie Roberts.

 

Krum 5, Carthage 0

Game 1, 4A Regional Championship
At Grand Saline High School

Krum               001    101    2    --   5   9    0
Carthage         000    000    0   --    0    2   3

Pitchers and catchers

  • Krum: Tristan Bridges and Morgan Sebastian
  • Carthage: Taylor Wills and Hope Kruebbe

WP -- Bridges
LP -- Willis

Doubles

Krum: Lindsay Beutnagal

Home Runs

Krum: Bridges