With two outs in the top of the seventh inning, the Riverdale softball team was given new life.
The Lady Warriors took advantage of it and scored four runs to beat Coffee County 4-1 Saturday night and earn a berth in this week’s BlueCross Spring Fling.
Kristin Uselton had a double to tie the game, scoring Brooklyn Pendergrast and the Lady Warriors got the benefit of an error to score three more runs.
Riverdale will play this week at Starplex in the state tournament.
The Lady Warriors (33-11-1) had two outs and no runners on when Pendergrast reached base on a Brianna Jones’ throwing error. Jones threw the ball in the dirt to allow Pendergrast to reach base. Then Uselton belted a double down the third-base line, scoring Pendergrast to tie the game 1-1.
Sarah Higgins and Caylee Porter followed with back-to-back walks to load the bases for Paige Byram.
Byram hit a grounder back to Jones, who threw it over the first baseman’s head near the Riverdale dugout, scoring all three runners.
“We didn’t give up,” Riverdale coach Christy Bingham said. “Kristin Uselton got things started with that double. That got all the girls started, and they knew they could do it.
“They were hitting the ball tonight. They just took until the seventh inning to get things going.”
Uselton remembered last year’s sectional loss to Soddy-Daisy.
“Last year we had an opportunity against Soddy to score some runs,” Uselton said. “I wasn’t about to lose again — not again.”
Through the first six innings, the Lady Warriors left eight runners on base. And Jones had struck out 12 batters, many of which with runners in scoring position.
“They made some plays,” Coffee County coach Terry Floyd said. “To win some games, you have to have a little luck.”