They had them right where they wanted them.
Ardmore trailed Alexandria 3-2 in the seventh inning during the final game of their third round playoff series Tuesday afternoon. The Tigers have won so many games this season in the final inning, they didn’t blink when faced with another late game deficit.
With one out on the scoreboard and a runner in scoring position, Ben Hargrove and Cody Reed made history for Ardmore with the swing of their bats. Hargrove drove home Thomas Davidson with an RBI-single to tie the score before Reed added another RBI with a shot to left field that scored Adam Clark.
Reed’s hit was the last of four consecutive hits that sent Ardmore to the 4A semifinals for the first time in school history. It was the final home at bat for Hargrove and Clark.
“We just keep coming back all the time,” said Reed, a Vanderbilt commitment. “Thomas came through clutch with a double, Ben doing his stuff and then I just did the best I could with a 3-2 count.”
After retaking the lead in the top of the seventh, Reed and the Ardmore defense made sure they didn’t lose it again in a three-up-three-down inning. It was Reed’s 14th inning in the series, which was delayed twice due to rain causing the final game in the series to be pushed back until Tuesday.
It was a fitting end to what had been a tense third round playoff series for Ardmore. The Tigers were denied a chance to come back Friday night in game two. Trailing 3-1 in the top of the seventh, Alexandria was awarded a win after the game was called off because of heavy rain.
Tuesday’s win was the second time for Ardmore to earn a come from behind win during the playoffs. They previously rallied Against Madison County in the second round to win the opening game 5-4 in extra innings.
“That seventh inning the past few weeks has been where they’ve stepped up,” Ardmore head coach Andrew Smith said. “They’ve been down, but they’re not out. They’ve had some great at bats in the seventh inning. Our guys just kept battling back until the very end.”
After swapping runs in the opening inning Tuesday, Hargrove gave his team a 2-1 lead in the second inning with a solo shot to center field. The visitors tied the game once again in the bottom of the second before taking the lead in the fifth.
With two outs, Logan Doss hit a short chopper to Reed, who slipped on the rain-soaked field and allowed Cole Burgess to score from third. Reed more than made up for the error by striking out three batters over the next two innings. The junior finished with eight strikeouts in a complete game.
“We knew we had to win this game before anything else,” said Reed. “I was tired, pitching on three days rest. Coming off a 121-pitch game and having just a few days rest, I haven’t done that all year. It’s pretty rough.”
Ardmore (24-8) advanced to play at No. 3 ranked Brooks (43-9) Friday, beginning at 11 a.m. Because Reed pitched a complete game Tuesday, AHSAA rules stipulate he can’t pitch again until Saturday.
“It was a one game season today,” said Smith. “We had to win today or we go home. Our other two guys will throw Friday and we feel comfortable with them. They’ve won a bunch of games for us this year.”
Tigers advance to semis for 1st time
They had them right where they wanted them.
- Local News 2
TRACTOR PULL: A new generation takes over in Tanner
One of the first families of the Tanner pull is the Haneys. Horace Haney, along with brother, Shirley, co-founded the event in 1976 that draws thousands to the county each year. The sons of those pulling pioneers now run the show.
Clay Haney follows in father’s footsteps
After watching his dad pull for the past 20 years, Clay finally got his chance. Although he has pulled multiple times over the years, this will be the first year to compete for points in the Mid-South Pullers Association.
North win streak improves to 12
The South last won 85-76 in in 2002.
Local athletes lead North to soccer sweep
East Limestone’s Dilan Sayer scored the opening goal and was named MVP of the boys game in a 3-0 win while Jordan Runion scored her team’s opening goal in a 3-1 for the girls.
Davidson helps North tie
She was one of only three North players to record a hit in the opener, which ended 3-3.
Pitching duties were shared by Lexington’s Jessie Butler, Central-Florence’s Ashley Irons and Hartselle’s Jada Hayes along with eventual North MVP Maddie Moore of Winfield.
Tedford, Potts take on the South in All-Star hoops game
Stace Tedford has had a busy year at Athens. After leading the basketball team to a school-record 24 consecutive wins and regional finals appearance, he jumped straight into soccer season, where he took the varsity girls soccer team to another 5A state championship game.
Wednesday, Tedford will be on the court again, coaching in the North-South All-Star basketball game.
Strong local presence at state All-Star Week
Some of the top rising seniors from the Athens-Limestone area will play in six of the games, beginning with softball and soccer games Tuesday.
Before politics, Seibert played for the Tide
A standout on West Limestone’s football team, Seibert’s road to Tuscaloosa wasn’t an easy one. Determined to play at the highest level, he attempted to join the Tide as a walk-on in fall 1993.
State softball tournament begins in Athens today
The three-day, double-elimination event begins at 6 tonight at the Athens Sportsplex.
Run with goats Saturday
Belle Chevre Creamery will hosts the first annual ‘Running with the Goats’ Saturday in downtown Elkmont. The event will feature a 10K, 5K and fun run on the certified Rails to Trails course.
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- TRACTOR PULL: A new generation takes over in Tanner