LONGVIEW -- Chelsea Mayfield doesn't need a physical. Her heart works just fine.

Spring Hill's head coach watched her team battle back from Friday's 6-5 extra innings loss against Mineola in Game 1 of the two teams' Class 3A bi-district playoff series for a tying win and then a series clincher about three hours laster.

Her Lady Panthers cruised most of the afternoon on their home field. But they nearly coughed up their leads in the seventh inning of both games on the way to a 4-3 win in Game 2 and a 6-5 victory in Game 3.

"It's not the first time I've felt that way," she said, laughing. "And I'm going to go ahead and say it probably won't be the last."

Better to have the opportunity for more scares than check in equipment next week.

The day started off brilliantly for Spring Hill, especially considering the pitcher in the circle for the opposition. It was Rikkilyn Hass who had pitched for her 100th career 15 hours beforehand.

The Lady Panthers got back-to-back-to-back hits to start Game 2 and ultimately built a 4-0 lead into the second inning.

Mineola put a run on the board in the third and could have had two scores in the frame if one runner had not mistakenly crossed the plate and returned to the dugout on what was a routine fly ball to center turned into an inning-ending double play. Nevertheless, it was in decent position entering the seventh inning with Hass recovered from the tough start and dealing on the other end.

Things looked real good after Sister Green hit a two-out, bases loaded double for two runs and advanced Manda Wilmoth to third base. Unfortunately for the Lady Jackets, Morgan Catron popped out to first base to end the game.

Game 3 was much more difficult for Mineola despite taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the first.

Hass was in the circle again, but she was nearing and then surpassed 300 pitches in a 24-hour span.

Madison Martin got things going for Spring Hill in the second inning with a solo home run to left field and then the Lady Panthers tacked on four more runs in the third before Mineola got its defensive rhythm back.

The Lady Jackets drew just a bit closer with a run in sixth inning to cut the deficit to 5-2.

Spring Hill answered right back though with a final run in their sixth frame when Kaylin McWhorter batted in Allison Akins.

It looked good for the Lady Panthers considering starting pitcher Hailie Gilbert had given up just five hits through six innings of work after starting Friday's game and playing in the field for Game 2.

"I was feeling good and my approach was just to keep them off balance," Gilbert said. "They're a good hitting team. I'll give them that. They hit a few really hard right off of me, but I was working around the circle. I learned that from last night. We were kind of trying to get the feel and we had the feel today."

The Spring Hill pitcher had to stay strong in the seventh. The Lady Panthers infield committed four errors and gave up three runs of their four-run lead.

With the bases loaded a third time in the inning, however, Gilbert pitched for contact and got a groundout near first base to end the game and series.

Spring Hill will take on either Liberty-Eylau or Rains in the area round.

 "We learned to never say die," Gilbert said. "That's the attitude we had and what we need to have the rest of the playoffs. We got beat last night and came back to win twice."

Spring Hill 4, Mineola 3

Class 3A Region II Bi-District Playoff Series -- Game 2

At Spring Hill High School

Mineola                   001    000    2    --    3    6    0
Spring Hill               400    000    X    --    4    7    2

Pitchers and catchers
  • Mineola: Rikkilyn Hass and Morgan Catron.
  • Spring Hill: Kaylin McWhorter and Madison Haney.

 

WP -- McWhorter.
LP -- Hass.

 

Doubles
  • Mineola: Hass, Sister Green (2).
  • Spring Hill: McWhorter.

Spring Hill 6, Mineola 5

Class 3A Region II Bi-District Playoff Series -- Game 3

At Spring Hill High School

Mineola                   100    001    3    --    5    5     1
Spring Hill               014    001    X    --    6    10   5

Pitchers and catchers
  • Mineola: Rikkilyn Hass and Morgan Catron.
  • Spring Hill: Hailie Gilbert and Madison Haney.

 

WP -- Gilbert.
LP -- Hass.

 

Triples
  • Spring Hill: Madison Martin.
Home Runs
  • Spring Hill: Martin.