(Photo by David Jenkins, Staff)
ORAN -- It's something that the Oran Lady Eagles have had to deal with for most of the season and it's what eventually ended their year.
After seven errors on Friday afternoon, the Lady Eagles were eliminated by the Naylor Lady Eagles in the Class 1, District 1 championship game at Oran High School in an 8-4 loss.
"We came out strong and had our heads in and thought we were going to do good, but we just had errors at the wrong time," Oran starting catcher Amanda Williams said.
The No. 1 seed Naylor took advantage of Oran's mistakes early with three runs in the first and two more in the second obtaining a 5-1 lead.
"That's kind of been a way to summarize our season," Oran head coach Sarah Heisserer said about her team's errors. "After just even one error, they get to thinking about it. It starts being a mental thing and they had a hard time overcoming it."
A 2-RBI double by Darby Pruett opened things up for Naylor in the bottom of the first after Halle Woodfin gave Oran a 1-0 lead in their half of the first inning.
An error on the infield on a ball put in ball by Charity McCoy led to Naylor's third run of the inning.
"Putting early runs on the board really got us down," Williams said.
More errors in the bottom of the second led to run scored by Ericka Engleman and Andrea Sullivan which gave Naylor their 4-run lead.
Engleman, who finished the day with two hits, extended Naylor's lead in the bottom of the fourth with a 2-run home run over the left field fence making it 7-1.
"We were expecting them to hit every ball," Williams said about Naylor. "We told our outfield they had to play deep because they have a bunch of power hitters, but they do have some of their quick ones. All around, they're a good hitting team."
Naylor finished the day with 10 hits.
Although Oran had six hits, three from Woodfin alone, they never could manage a big hit when they needed it.
"We usually get our hits when we need them, but this game they didn't come," said Williams.
Oran's Morgan Todt was handed the loss in six innings of work. Todt allowed three earned runs on 10 hits and two walks. She also struck out two.
Oran will be saying goodbye to four seniors; Williams, Woodfin, Abbey Anderson and Shelbie Seyer.
"It's been great here," said Williams about her four years as Oran's catcher. "We have great coaches. At the beginning of the year, we knew we were going to have a good team. As the year went on, we made our little errors but we always grew from what we did. It leaves the younger classman with the experience they need."
"They've been a pleasure to have," Heisserer added about her four seniors. "They've helped out tremendously. They've been in key spots for us and there's going to be some big shoes to fill. I hate to see them go."
Oran 100 020 1 -- 4
Naylor 320 210 x -- 8
WP -- Ericka Engleman. LP -- Morgan Todt. Multiple hitters -- (O) Halle Woodfin 3-4, Shelbie Seyer 2-3; (N) Engleman 2-4, Katelyn Hughey 2-4, Carleigh Lane 2-3. 2B -- (N) Andrea Sullivan, Darby Pruett. HR -- (N) Engleman.