A Lady Dogs dashes to third in a region playoff game against Hart County. Photo by Jesse Walker

A Lady Dogs dashes to third in a region playoff game against Hart County. Photo by Jesse Walker

By Nick Nunn, Staff Writer

The Morgan County High School (MCHS) varsity Lady Dogs softball team advanced to the third round of the 8-AAA region playoffs after beating Hart County in back-to-back games Monday night. After a close 6-5 win over Hart in the first game of the doubleheader, the Lady Dogs shut out Hart 13-0 to secure their advancement to the third round.

Morgan County’s first two runs in the first game of the doubleheader against Hart County came in on an error after Laree Van Orden drove the ball into the outfield.

Hart was only able to counter with one run of their own in the bottom of the first. Sarah Couch hit a home run in the top of the second to put the Dogs ahead 3-1, but Hart again made up the run in the bottom of the inning.

Sarah Couch earned another RBI with a sacrifice fly in the fourth inning to make the score 4-2, but, again, Hart brought the game to within one run in the bottom of the fifth.

Couch again earned an RBI on a sacrifice fly in the sixth inning, which went unanswered by Hart in the bottom of the inning.

Van Orden hit an RBI single in the top of the seventh inning for Morgan County’s last run, making the score 6-3, but Hart wasn’t willing to let the last inning go without challenging the Lady Dogs.

With two outs against them, Hart again managed to bring the score to within one run by scoring to runs, but they weren’t able to get ahead of the Dogs, who held onto their lead for a 6-5 lead.

Morgan County’s 13-0 shutout of Hart in the second game only lasted four innings.

Van Orden, Elizabeth Couch, Alisha Ellis, and Sarah Couch all earned RBIs in the top of the first.

The Dogs scored two runs in the second inning on a passed ball, and three runs in the third thanks to RBIs by Frierson and Laney Crawford, making the score 9-0.

In the top of the fourth, Morgan County scored four additional runs, enough to call the run rule into play and end the game after the Dogs retired Hart in the bottom of the inning.

The Lady Dogs also won their last regular season game of the year 7-0 against East Jackson on Tuesday, Oct 1.

Morgan County put on their first three runs of the game in the second inning, beginning with an RBI on a sacrifice fly by Sarah Couch. Elizabeth Couch then scored on a passed ball, and Carly Hodgson drove in the last run of the inning on an RBI single to make the score 3-0.

Van Orden hit a two-run homer in the third inning to boost the score to 5-0, and the final two runs of the game for Morgan County were driven in by Crawford with a two-RBI single in the fourth inning to make the final score 7-0.

Frierson pitched the shutout, allowing only two hits but striking 11 East Jackson batters during the course of the game.

Today, Oct. 10, the Lady Dogs will play Franklin County at 2 p.m. at Jackson County High School in a region semifinal game. Should Morgan County win, they will play in the region championship game at 6 p.m., but, if they lose, they will play in a consolation game at 4 p.m. to determine seeding for state playoffs.