Lady Hornets rally for first win at Southern Warrior Classic

File photo by Rick Nation

SMYRNA, Tenn. — Regan Ryan added two more singles to her school-record total and, in the process, set a state record for singles in a career with 133 as the Bryant Lady Hornets, in the first round of the Southern Warrior Classic, hosted by Murfreesboro, Tenn., High School, rallied from a 3-2 deficit to forge a 7-4 victory over the Stewarts Creek Red Hawks of Smyrna on Wednesday evening.

Ryan, Sarah Evans, Bella Herring and Raven Loveless each had two hits for the Lady Hornets who improved to 9-0 on the season. They were expected to play Thursday at Riverdale High School at noon then against Mainland Regional High School at 6 p.m., at Riverdale.

The Bryant junior varsity also won, 3-0, over the Stewarts Creek JV. Hannah Work pitched the shutout.

In the varsity win, Loveless went the distance in the pitcher’s circle allowing five hits without a walk. She fanned four and all four Stewarts Creek runs were unearned.

After Loveless pitched around a one-out single in the top of the first, the Lady Hornets grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the inning. Ryan beat out an infield hit, took second on Gianni Hulett’s sacrifice and scored on a double by Evans. Brooklyn Trammell got Evans to third with a grounder to the right side and, after Loveless hit by a pitch, Meagan Chism singled to play Evans.

Stewarts Creek tied it with two in the top of the third. A single, an error and a sacrifice had runners at second and third. With two down, a hit batsman loaded the bases. Two runs then scored on a two-strike single.

The Lady Red Hawks took the lead in the top of the fourth on a double and a two-out error.

But the Lady Hornets weren’t behind for long. In the home fourth, Alissa Suarez reached on a two-out error and Herring singled. When the ball was misplayed in left, Suarez raced home. Herring wound up at third and she scored to snap a 3-3 tie on a wild pitch.

Loveless followed up by setting down the Lady Red Hawks in order in the top of the fifth.

A two-out single by Evans in the bottom of the fifth led to two more tallies for Bryant. Trammell lashed a double to left that got Evans home then pinch-runner Joely Calhoun raced all the way home from first on a hit to center by Loveless to make it 6-3.

Stewarts Creek managed a run in the top of the sixth. A hit batsman, a single and an error on a bunt loaded the bases. Loveless induced a grounder to Evans at short, who threw home for a force. The next batter however, bounced out to second as the run scored.

But Loveless and her teammates kept it to that. A comebacker to Loveless started a home-to-first doubleplay to end the threat with the Lady Hornets retaining the lead, 6-4.

Before time ran out, the Lady Hornets tacked on another run in the bottom of the sixth. Herring’s one-out single was followed by a groundout by Maddie Stephens that got Herring to third. Ryan bunted and a wild throw to first allowed Herring to score.

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