Dolls glitter in battle of diamonds|[6/19/05]

Published 12:00 am Monday, June 20, 2005

In a battle of diamonds, the Vicksburg-based Diamond Dolls made use of a four-run rally in an extra inning tie-breaker to beat the Delta Diamonds 6-2 Saturday night at Bazinsky Park.

The Diamond Dolls advance to today’s winners bracket contest at 11:30 a.m. while the Delta Diamonds fall into a loser’s bracket game at 10 a.m.

The two teams entered the featured contest of the 25-team Rumble on the River fast-pitch softball tournament unbeaten. The Dolls had won both of their pool-play games and then beat the Lady Cats’ 2-1 in a first round bracket game. The Diamonds, a 14-and-under team that was playing up in the 16-under tournament, had won both pool games by 5-0 scores.

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“It came down to errors. Our problem all season has been trying to scratch out enough runs. Every game it seems we’re in a one or two-run game,” Diamond Dolls coach Howard Johnson said.

The two teams were tied 2-2 after five innings. Play went to the international tie-breaking rule which places the last out of the previous inning on second.

Kaleigh Harris was on second and moved to third on Kaci Flaherty’s grounder to first. The Diamonds then elected not to play two straight bunts, resulting in a bases-loaded situation.

With two out, Harris was able to score on a wild pitch from Caitlyn Adams. Then Diamonds’ catcher Alyssa Cummins overthrew the bag at third, allowing Candice McGee to score for a 4-2 lead.

A ground ball from Ashley Sykes was booted at second, bringing in both Courtney Prentiss and Lauren Johnson. Johnson’s run came off a collision at home plate which led to a 10-minute argument.

“ASA rules say you have to slide, but a catcher cannot block the plate either. It’s a rule that’s got to be addressed because we’re having a lot of collisions like this already this season,” Johnson said of the play.

Dolls pitcher Heidi Lee got a game-ending double play when a line drive from Paige Livingston glanced off the glove of Johnson at first and into Sarah Kerut’s glove at second. Kerut then doubled off the Diamonds’ runner to end the game.