As far as playing small ball goes, Silverdale Baptist Academy played about as small as possible in Monday's District 5-A high school softball tournament game against Arts & Sciences at Warner Park.
And aided by an error in each of the innings they scored, the Lady Seahawks avenged two regular-season losses by defeating the Lady Patriots 3-1.
"I think we knew going into the game we could beat them," Silverdale coach Tim Couch said. "We had a couple of close games with them, I thought, but this is when it counts. They made three errors and that was the difference in the game."
Silverdale (15-11) will play at regular-season champion Grace Academy today at 7 p.m. in the winners-bracket final.
"They're a good team," Couch said of the Lady Golden Eagles. "We're going to have to play good to beat them. But what we've got to realize is if they beat us, it's not over."
CSAS (13-16) will host Boyd-Buchanan in a losers-bracket game at 5:30.
"We didn't come out ready to play," CSAS coach Kristin Holloway said. "We came out thinking we would beat them like we had in the past. We were flat in warm-ups. We were flat in the dugout. We weren't even focused to begin with. It was like nobody showed up."
Bryce Killingsworth singled starting the second inning for the Lady Seahawks. Then the small ball began.
A throwing error on Katelyn Couch's sacrifice bunt preceded Michaela Harrison's sacrifice, which drove in a run.
With one on and two out in the fourth, Allison Meadows and Sloane Woodard hit back-to-back singles that added together wouldn't cover the distance between the pitcher's circle and home plate. Bri Leffew's fielder's choice drove in a run in the fourth, which included a throwing error on Meadows' hit, and another throwing error led to a run the next inning that made it 3-0.
Losing pitcher Liana Rodrigues, who had been the winner in the Lady Patriots' second victory over Silverdale, walked the first two batters Monday and had four walks in the first three innings.
"Her pitches weren't exactly working, but I don't think Silverdale had any big hits, no extra-base hits," Holloway said. "A lot of their baserunners came from walks and errors."
CSAS reliever Briana Taylor threw shutout innings in the sixth and seventh and also went 2-for-4.
Kelley Smiddie is a sports writer who has worked at the Times Free Press for 12 years. He covers high school sports and softball. Kelley’s hometown is Chattanooga, and he graduated from Brainerd High School and graduated Chattanooga State and UTC. Contact Kelley at 423-757-6653 or firstname.lastname@example.org.