Promise leads to Hartselle win
Pevahouse's homer subdues Decatur
By Brooke Milam
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Hartselle High junior Kristy Pevahouse promised assistant coach Christy Ferguson a hit before Tuesday's game with local rival Decatur.
A lady of her word, Pevahouse made good on the promise, and did the pledge one better — she knocked a two-run homer in the fifth inning for the game-winning runs in a 3-2 win at Decatur's Kiwanis Field.
Class 5A fourth-ranked Hartselle (26-6) edged out second-ranked Decatur (28-9) on Tuesday, but Hartselle coach Shane Alexander said he expects the two teams to meet again down the road in the postseason.
"I tell you, they're a great team," Alexander said. "I expect to see them (at the state tournament) in Montgomery. It'd be great if it were us and Decatur in the state championship game."
Both teams threw their ace pitchers.
Hartselle senior Breanna Segars struck out six batters, pitching the entire seven innings, while Decatur sophomore Mollie Russell also struck out six in a complete-game effort.
Pevahouse said that as the Lady Tigers' leadoff batter, she feels the pressure to produce — and she did so in a big way against Decatur.
"I had two strikes on me, and I was feeling it," Pevahouse said. "I feel like I need to get on base every time."
Decatur scored in the first inning for a 1-0 lead when Russell walked with the bases loaded to score Lindsey Hawkins. But after that, Hartselle's defense buckled down.
Four scoreless innings later, Hartselle's Audrey McClanahan led off the fifth inning with a triple.
"Audrey's been a good surprise," Alexander said. "She's just a sophomore, but she's got some pop in her bat. That kind of settled everybody down."
But Alexander said he never felt at ease against Decatur.
"To be honest, I didn't feel settled the whole game," Alexander said.
A single by Segars sent McClanahan home, tying the score 1-1.
The Lady Tigers had one out when Pevahouse's two-run homer sailed over the right-center field fence.
Decatur responded by putting two runners on base in the bottom of the fifth, but couldn't bring either of them home.
The Lady Red Raiders left nine runners on base.
A single by Hawkins scored Whitney Fletcher in the bottom of the seventh to make it 3-2, but the Lady Red Raiders left Hawkins stranded on third.
Hawkins went 4-for-4 for Decatur, while Jelisa Thompson and Fletcher each singled.
Decatur coach Ashley Mueller, a former standout for Decatur who graduated in 2000, said she wasn't surprised with Hartselle's solid hitting under pressure.
"They hit well. They've hit well ever since I was playing," Mueller said.
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