Stinnett blanks McEwen in region opener

Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Forrest's Brooke Herron belts a two-run double in the second inning, giving the Lady Rockets a 2-0 lead and giving Shelby Stinnett all the runs she would need in a 5-0 win over McEwen in the Region 5-A opener in Chapel Hill Monday night. Tribune photo by Anthony S. Puca

Forrest's Shelby Stinnett continued her post-season prowess Monday night at the Field of Dreams in Chapel Hill versus McEwen in the Region 5-A opener, tossing a complete game shutout and her teammates supported her with all the runs she needed, scoring five times.

There was no scoring until the bottom of the second inning when Rachel Curtis led off with a single to left, Adrean Jordan followed with a hot shot single off McEwen pitcher Michelle Smith's leg, and Caitlyn Rotchford reached on an infield error, loading the sacks for Brooke Herron.

Herron worked a 3-2 count before blistering a line drive double over the leftfielder's head, plating Curtis and Jordan.

"We have been working hard on staying up at practice and it's paying off," said Herron after the contest. "It was great and it really made my confidence go up. Nobody expected us to win and if we play like we did tonight we should be good. I heard a lot of people say we weren't going to win this year, so it just makes us work harder."

Forrest could have had more, but a line drive double play and a grounder to first ended the inning.

Stinnett set down the Lady Warriors in order in the third, striking out two.

Forrest tacked on their last three runs in the home half of the third inning.

Chelsea Johnson lashed a leadoff double and went to third on a bunt single by Courtney Hollandsworth, who promptly stole second base.

Stinnett knocked in Johnson with an infield single deep in the shortstop hole, making it 3-0.

Hollandsworth came home on a passed ball for a 4-0 lead.

Korisa Warlick, who had come in to run for Stinnett was nailed at third trying to advance on a ball that got away from the McEwen catcher with no outs.

Curtis got her second hit of the ballgame and went all the way to third on a passed ball and scored on a Jordan sac fly to right, making it five-zip.

In the 3rd inning, McEwen finally got their first hit off Stinnett by Taylor Long and Katherine Hooper made it first and second, one out later.

Stinnett got out of the jam on a fly ball to center and an inning ending strikeout.

Forrest looked like they were going to break the game wide open in the bottom of the fourth; loading the bases with one out before a line drive double play ended the threat.

The Lady Warriors did not quit, loading the bases in the fifth before the comeback was thwarted on a nice play at third by Curtis for the last out.

McEwen would not mount another serious threat over their last two at bats and their season was ended in the 5-0 loss.

FHS head coach Becky Cheatham said after the game, "It's good to win, but I am not real happy with the situation. Our base running has got to improve and we have got to get better at the plate. I was pleased defensively, but we have all got to understand that there is still improvement to be made and if we don't make it, we won't be allowed to hang around."

The Lady Rockets will host East Robertson in Wednesday night's championship as the Lady Indians beat Cascade 3-0 in Cross Plains.

Forrest (25-4) and East Robertson (26-8) have met in the region title game four out of the last five years with the Lady Indians only win coming in 2007 in a 7-3 triumph up in Robertson County.