by Gregg Meadows
Coach Tom Crowley’s Tri-Valley softball team enters the final week of the regular season with a chance to eclipse the .500 mark overall. The Lady Dawgs currently sport a record of 11-12 overall and a respectable 8-5 count in Muskingum Valley League play.
Their past four outings saw the black and gold pick up a big 18-4 win at Maysville, take one on the chin at John Glenn, then split a Saturday, May 1 doubleheader with visiting Fairfield Union at Kenny Wolford Park.
Back on Tuesday night, April 27 at Maysville, Lady Dawg sophomore Keyona Murphy’s rbi triple in the top of the fifth inning broke a 3-3 tie with the host Lady Panthers, and opened the flood gates for the visitors, as Tri-Valley would score five times in the inning, then bust open the game in the next inning, pushing 10 runs across the plate on their way to the 18-4 win.
Murphy would one-up herself in that big sixth inning, with a home run that highlighted her big night at the plate, as she led the Lady Dawgs with a 3-4 outing, with four rbi’s and three runs scored as part of a gigantic 19-hit night for Tri-Valley. TV freshman Kierra Joseph also had a three-hit performance at the plate that included a first-inning three-run over-the-fence blast, while the winners also got three hits from Rachael Cox and Brynn Miller, and two hits apiece from Falon Wolford (two doubles), Raegan Smith, and Belle Baughman. Baughman and Miller combined their mound talents to get the win in the circle.
Just 24 hours later in New Concord, the Lady Dawgs’ bats went silent, as John Glenn pitcher Sydney Marshall struck out 10 Tri-Valley batters and allowed only a second-inning Kierra Joseph single as the only blemish on her one-hit, 3-0 shutout win over Tri-Valley on Wednesday night, Apr. 29.
Mother Nature intervened for the next 48 hours on Thursday and Friday, as a scheduled, then re-scheduled date at home with visiting New Lexington was wiped out due to rain and a soggy field, and now has been (re)rescheduled for Tuesday night, May 4 in Dresden at Wolford Park.
The Lady Dawgs welcomed Fairfield Union to Kenny Wolford Park on Saturday for a doubleheader and after losing the first game 10-4, came back in the second contest to take a big 17-7 win over the visiting Lady Falcons.
In the first game loss, TV’s Brynn Miller led the offense, going three-for-three at the plate with a fourth-inning home run, a double, and a single, scoring two runs and knocking in two as well. Falon Wolford, Raegan Smith, and Mackenzie Hartrum also enjoyed multiple-hit games for the Lady Dawgs in the loss.
Game 2 was a different story for Tri-Valley as Lady Dawg sophomore Falon Wolford (pictured below) replicated a feat she accomplished earlier in the season when she hit three home runs (one a grand slam) and knocked in nine runs in an Apr. 22, TV 20-2 win at Coshocton. Against the Lady Falcons in the second game of the doubleheader, she did it again, going 4-4 at the plate with a first-inning double, third and fourth inning home runs, and a sixth-inning grand slam and nine rbi total for the game to lead the home team Lady Dawgs to a big 17-7 win.
She did it again!
Twice this season, Tri-Valley softball sophomore Falon Wolford has enjoyed a monstrous three home-run and nine rbi game. The first was Apr. 22, in a 20-2 TV win at Coshocton, and the second was Saturday afternoon at Wolford Park in the Lady Dawgs 17-7 win over visiting Fairfield Union in the second game of a doubleheader, when ‘she did it again’ in the home team’s big win.
Tri-Valley’s leading home run hitter on the season – sophomore Raegan Smith (pictured below) – slammed a round-tripper in the first inning, her tenth dinger of the season, and enjoyed a three-hit game, knocking in two runs for the winners. Mackenzie Hartum added three hits for the black and gold as well in the victory – and five hits on the day – as TV’s Rachael Cox and Kaila Smith also added two hits apiece in the 18-hit Lady Dawg attack.
She’s got game!
Pictured above is Lady Dawg sophomore softball talent Raegan Smith, who is the Tri-Valley home run leader with 10 round-trippers – heading into the final week of the 2021 regular season. The black and gold wrap up the regular season in the week ahead with three conference games scheduled, then hop on the tournament trail on Wednesday, May 12, when the Lady Dawgs – the 5th seed in the OHSAA East District D-II (East) bracket – host the Carrollton Lady Warriors (the 12th seed) in a home tourney opener at Kenny Wolford Park.
Belle Baughman and Brynn Miller pitched three innings apiece – with Miller striking out five Lady Falcons – to combine talents for the win.
The Lady Dawgs head into the regular season’s final week of play with a chance to finish over the .500 mark overall, with back-to-back home Wolford Park dates on Monday and Tuesday vs. Maysville and New Lexington, then a Wednesday night, May 5 trip to West Muskingum in the regular-season finale.
The softball postseason OHSAA tournament draws were held state-wide on Sunday, May 2, and the Lady Dawgs fared well in the D-II (Region 7) Eastern District (East 1) draw, as first-year Coach Tom Crowley’s Lady Dawgs earned the fifth-seed (and a home game!) and will face the 12th seeded Carrollton Lady Warriors at Kenny Wolford Park and their home Don Barcus Field on Wednesday night, May 12.
Good luck the rest of the way Lady Dawgs!