The Lady Wildcats were dominated in all facets of the game as they lost to the Houston High School Lady Hilltoppers 12-0 in game two of a best-of-three series in the first round of the 4A state fastpitch softball playoffs. The loss completed a two-game sweep for the Hilltoppers and ended Cleveland’s season at 15-10. Houston improved to 22-6 and will advance into the second round.
The Hilltoppers out hit Cleveland 10-6 and took advantage of every mistake the Lady Wildcats made.
Leading 3-0, Houston had its big inning in the top of the fifth. Houston’s Chelsea Gates roped a RBI-double, Madeline Burdine nailed an inside-the-park grand slam home run, Quaneisha Pratt stroked a RBI-triple and Chelsea Robinson drilled two hits and drove in a run in the inning, Cleveland also committed two errors as the Hilltoppers finished with nine runs in the frame to push their lead to 12-0.
Cleveland couldn’t score in the bottom of the fifth and the game ended due to a 10-run mercy rule.
“Houston is a fantastic ball team that can flat out hit,” Cleveland High head coach Bill Hatcher said. “They made the plays when we did get some offense going, and we made a few mistakes that kind of open the gates up for them.”
Brianna Garner took the loss for Cleveland in the circle as she gave up all 12 runs on 10 hits with one strikeout and four walks. Molly Upchurch tossed a scoreless inning of relief for Cleveland.
Garner and Megan Skelton nailed a hit each to lead the Lady Wildcats, followed by Kelli Cummins and Reagan Walker with a hit each.