APPLING, Ga. --- It wasn't supposed to end the way it did. But it did. And neither team had any control over it.
It was a Mother Nature thing called rain. Well, not just rain. Actually it was a downpour that forced an abrupt end to a girls' softball contest between Thomson's Lady Bulldogs and Lovett -- a metro Atlanta team.
The thunderstorm hit in the top of the fourth inning with Lovett up 1-0. The trophy was awarded to Lovett, who had driven to Patriots Park in Columbia County to play in the Chick-Fil-A Tournament. Thomson, meanwhile, captured the runner-up trophy.
Thomson, coached by Jason Osborn, had gotten into the championship game by going undefeated in the tournament, just like Lovett, last Saturday.
The Lady Bulldogs had beaten four other opponents before getting a shot at Lovett, one of the most respected girls' softball programs in Georgia.
Thomson's wins came against Lincoln County (13-3); Lakeside (12-2); Hephzibah (16-1); and Lucy Laney (12-1).
Thomson appeared to have picked up where they left off in summer league play. The team had a most impressive summer season.
In the game against Lovett, the Lady Bulldogs found getting a hit to be next to impossible in the three innings they faced Lovett pitcher Laura Madden. During that period, Madden struck out five Thomson batters. The only hit she gave up was to freshman catcher Haley Poss, who lined a single into right field.
Lovett's only run of the unofficial game crossed the plate in the top of the second. The score might have gotten higher were it not for the Lady Bulldogs turning two fine defensive plays.
Poss, playing for injured senior Hannah Pereda, turned one of the outstanding defensive plays in the first inning after Lovett's leadoff batter drew a walk off Thomson sophomore pitcher Maegan Bentley, who went 3-1 during the tourney. Poss saw the runner getting a big lead and zipped the ball down to second baseman Brooke Herkel who tagged the runner out. The second fine defensive play came from junior shortstop Hannah Wilson who fielded a ground ball and quickly threw to Poss who tagged a runner out at home in the second inning.
In the first game of the tournament against Lincoln County's Lady Red Devils, Thomson's leading hitters were: Heather Shivers, 2-for-4 and 2 RBI; Hannah Wilson, 2-for-4 and 2 RBI; Brooke Herkel, 2-for-3 and 1 RBI; Jada Lawson, 2-for-2; Chelsea Reeves, 2-for-3 and 2 RBI; and Haley Poss, 1-for-3 and 1 RBI.
The second game against Lakeside last Friday saw the following Thomson players with hits: Shivers, 4-for-4; Wilson, 2-for-3 and 1 RBI; Herkel, 3-for-3 and 3 RBI; Lawson, 3-for-3 and 2 RBI; Caitlin Carpenter, 1-for-3 and 2 RBI; and Reeves, 1-for-4 and 2 RBI.
The game against Hephzibah saw several Thomson players get hits. They included: Shivers, 3-for-3 and 1 RBI; Lawson, 1-for-2 and 2 RBI; Carpenter, 1-for-1 and 1 RBI; Reeves, 2-for-2 and 5 RBI; and Poss, 1-for-2 and 1 RBI.
Thomson entertains the Harlem Lady Bulldogs this Saturday at the Thomson field. Game time is 1 p.m.