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Lady Dragons make Class 3 state tourney, bow out in first round

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Park View girls shut out Colonial Heights, Tabb to qualify for VHSL state tourney

South Boston News
Park View's Kaylee Coker is the picture of concentration as she waits to be driven in by teammate Deedee Cliborne during Park View's win over Colonial Heights Wednesday.
SoVaNow.com / May 29, 2019
The Park View softball team is headed for the VHSL Class 3 State tournament for the first time since 2016 after winning two games in regional postseason play this week.

The Lady Dragons defeated the Lady Colonials of Colonial Heights 11-0 in the opening round of the VHSL Region 3A tournament, and then blanked a tough Tabb Lady Tigers squad by a 4-0 score to reach the regional final. The top two teams in the region receive berths to the state tournament. Both wins this week took place at PVHS.

The Lady Dragons will travel to New Kent High School where they will face the Lady Trojans, the number one seed, in the regional finale. The Lady Trojans, 20-2 on the year, will enjoy home field advantage but the Lady Dragons are riding a hot streak having won eight of their last nine games. It promises to be quite a contest.

The Lady Dragons opened the Region 3A postseason with at 11-0 shellacking of the Lady Colonials of Colonial Heights. Emma Jo Wolfe got the start in the circle for Park View and pitched a seven-inning shutout, allowing just one run, striking out 11 and issuing a single walk.

Offensively the Dragons scored three in the bottom of the first, one in the second, one in the fifth and then exploded for six runs in the sixth. Wolfe, Carson Wall, Alyssa Berryman, Skyla Williams, Kaylee Coker and Madison Ezell paced Park View with two RBIs each. Senior outfielder Skyla Williams carried a big stick for the Dragons, going 2-for-4 with a double and dinger. Collectively the team went 10-for-26 at the plate in the dominating win.

T. Reighard started in the circle for Colonial Heights and the Lady Dragons showed no mercy. She gave up all 11 runs on nine hits and a pair of walks.

With the win the Lady Dragons advanced to the semi-final game to face the Tabb Lady Tigers with a berth in the state tourney on the line.



Wolfe continues to dominate opponents, blanks Tabb for trip to final

Emma Jo Wolfe continues to impress in the postseason. The senior pitcher for the Lady Dragons faced a tough Tabb team in the semifinal round of the VHSL Region 3A softball tournament and shut down the Lady Tigers. Wolfe needed a little help from her defense to get the shutout and they were up to the task as just one error was committed and it proved negligible. Wolfe, who threw 91 pitches, struck out four, issued just two walks, and allowed three hits for the complete game shutout.

Offensively the Dragons collected 12 hits in 27 at bats but were only able to get a pair of RBIs as they stranded eight runners on the bases. That is something you can be sure Coach Dean Crutchfield will work on leading up to the tourney final. Wolfe, Grayson Hudson, Berryman, Coker and Lizzie Wesson all had multi-hit performances swatting two apiece. Erin Bailey added a hit as well.

In the field the Lady Dragons were poised and nearly flawless with the only error coming early on and causing zero damage. The Park View fielders collected five ground-outs and nine fly-outs.

Park View scored their first run in the bottom of the second as A. Berryman slapped a single to second and beat the throw. S. Williams then laid down a textbook bunt to advance Berryman to second. K. Coker stepped into the batter’s box and laid down a bunt on the third base line allowing Berryman to advance and Coker to reach first. With runners at the corners Park View got aggressive with a double steal and it paid off handsomely with Coker advancing to second and Berryman scoring.

The Lady Dragons added two runs in the bottom of the fifth for a modicum of breathing room. G. Hudson singled to center with one out on the board followed by another single by Berryman to left advancing Hudson all the way to third. Berryman then advanced to second on the throw. S. Williams then hit a deep fly ball that looked like it had a chance to get beyond the fence but fell into the waiting outfielder’s glove. Hudson scored and Berryman advanced to third on the sacrifice.

With two outs and a runner on third, freshman outfielder K. Coker delivered with a single to right scoring Berryman for the three to naught lead.

The Dragons added the fourth run in the bottom of the sixth when L. Wesson led off with a single, advanced to second on M. Ezell’s sacrifice and then went to third when E. Wolfe slapped a two-out single to short. G. Hudson stepped into the batter’s box and Coach Crutchfield got aggressive once more, sending Grayson to steal second and Wesson to steal home for the 4-0 lead. The Dragons just missed a chance to add a fifth run when, with Wolfe on third, Hudson ripped a liner to center. Lady Trojan J. Hammer, charging hard, made the throw home to put Hudson out.

Tabb failed to mount much of an effort in the top of the seventh and the Lady Dragons took the victory 4-0.

With the victory, Park View improved to 17-5 and qualified for the VHSL state softball tournament. Before then, however, the girls will travel to New Kent to face the Lady Trojans for the Region 3A championship game. Regardless of the outcome of that game, the Lady Dragons will play an opponent yet to be determined in the opening round of the VHSL Class 3A State Tournament on June 4.

Should the Lady Dragons advance past the first round in state competition, semifinal games will take place at the Moyer Complex in Salem at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, June 7 with the championship game to follow on Saturday, June 8 at 1:00 p.m.

PV Head Coach Dean Crutchfield lauded his team’s efforts over the last two games: “Back to back shutouts speaks volumes for our pitching and defense, and our offense has produced throughout the lineup,” said Crutchfield. “We have overcome a lot of adversity this year. We’ve dealt with several injuries, but this group of ladies have worked their way to be a formidable force in the region.”





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