You could tell in the final two innings that Dawson head coach David McCorkle was getting really antsy after his girls had built a solid 10-4 lead over the Ridge Point Lady Panthers.
Trailing 4-1 entering the top of the fourth, the Lady Eagles batted around and scored seven runs to take the lead for good 8-4.
The seven runs computed to Dawson head football coach Eric Wells as a “touchdown and extra point” when the frame came to an end.
That was a huge inning that Dawson would need to give them the spark that they could beat favored Ridge Point who came into the single win or be done contest.
“Bailey Malone’s double that scored two in route to a seven run inning,” was one of the key moments said McCorkle. “Our momentum only grew after that.”
Rylee Rodriguez put Dawson on the scoreboard first with a solo home run over the centerfield wall for a 1-0 lead, but Ridge Point added two runs in the bottom of the second and third innings for a 4-1 advantage.
That when the Lady Eagles broke open the game in the fourth with seven runs and a four run lead.
Rodriguez opened the frame with a walk, Rose Sullivan stroked a single to right field, Niki Turner struck out, and Amber Langston walked to load the bases. Baylee Malone stepped up and sliced a single to right field sending Rodriguez and Sullivan home to cut the lead to 4-3. Ashley Langston dropped a bunt that scored Amber Langston. Megan Stone smashed a double to centerfield scoring two more runs while taking the lead at 6-4.
The Lady Eagles added two more runs capped off by a double by Rodriguez before a strikeout ended the inning leaving Dawson with an 8-4 advantage.
Both teams would score two runs each in the sixth for a 10-6 Dawson lead. The Lady Eagles score another run in the top of the seventh making the score 11-6 and then Ridge Point took advantage of a couple of Dawson errors to plate three runs to cut the margin to 11-9 as relief pitcher Kaylan Howard, who allowed one run and one walk, struck out the final batter to end the game.
Senior pitcher Megan Stone did an excellent job in the pitching circle for the Lady Eagles going six innings, allowing 10 hits, eight runs, and three walks to pick up the win.
Top hitters for the Lady Eagles was Rodriguez who was 2-for-2 with three runs scored and two RBIs. Rose Slullivan who was 2-for-4 with one run scored and three RBIs. Baylee Malone who was 2-for-3 with one run scored and two RBIs.
Last year, McCorkle guided the Lady Eagles to their first trip to the playoffs in school history where they picked up their first two playoff victories. The win against Ridge Point sends Dawson to their deepest run in school history, the 4A Region III semifinals.
Looking ahead, McCorkle said, “They (players) need to continue to stay focused. The pressure will only grow as we continue to play, but the best thing we have is experience. We have buckled under pressure and mistakes in the past , but we have grown from it and it has gotten us this far.
“We need all the players to continue growing and playing hard.”
Dawson will play a one game playoff against the Elgin Lady Wildcats at Texas A&M in College Station on Friday, May 16 at 7:30p.m.