FORSYTH – The Houston Lady Tigers completed a stumble to the finish line last Wednesday with a 9-2 loss to Crane in the opening round of the Class 2 District 6 tournament.
It was the first-ever district appearance for the fourth-year program. Houston competed in the fall for the first time.
Senior Shelbi Moore had two of Houston’s five hits in the final game of her career. Bethany Korte, who scored twice, Tory Burgess and Kyla Chambers had one hit apiece.
Sophomore Carmen Floyd took the loss. She surrendered 11 hits in seven innings while walking one and striking out two.
The 2009 season started strong for Houston. The Lady Tigers had an 8-3 record following a 16-3 thumping Sept. 17 of Plato. But after senior Lyndsay Tarrants was involved in an accident that killed a fellow classmate, Houston dropped its final four games and finished with an 8-7 record under first-year coach Willy Walker and assistant Jennifer McNiell.
Tarrants’ absence was more than an emotional letdown. The loss of the team’s starting catcher and No. 5 hitter forced a domino effect of three players switching positions.
Houston struggled defensively down the stretch, and it continued in district play. The Lady Tigers committed five errors, including four in one inning, and gave up four unearned runs.
“It was quite a challenge to fill her spot and have others playing unfamiliar positions,” Walker said of Tarrants. “We did end up above .500, but we had higher expectations. We had some missed opportunities to make it a memorable season.”
Houston took an early lead against Crane when Korte advanced all the way to third base on an error leading off the bottom of the first. She scored on Hannah Pounds’ sacrifice bunt.
The lead didn’t last.
Crane took advantage of four errors to score three runs in the third inning and added four more tallies in the fourth.
The Lady Tigers trailed 9-1 in the sixth when Moore singled home Korte.
Crane 003 402 0 – 9 11 2
Houston 100 001 0 – 2 5 5
HOUSTON (8-7) – Korte cf 3-2-1-0. Pounds c 2-0-0-1. Burgess ss 3-0-1-0. Moore 3b 3-0-2-1. Floyd p 3-0-0-0. Herndon 2b 3-0-0-0. Chambers 1b 3-0-1-0. Harrah rf 3-0-0-0. Kugler lf 3-0-0-0. Totals 26-2-5-2.
SB: Floyd. CS: Chambers. SAC: Pounds.
houston ip h r er bb so
Floyd, L 7 11 9 5 1 2