HAZARD — One bad inning was enough to send the Tri-City All-Stars home with a loss in the opening game of the District 4 Tournament (ages 11-12) on Friday.
Tri-City took the lead with a four-run second inning and stayed ahead until Hazard rallied with seven runs in the top of the fifth inning to claim a 9-8 win.
Kerrigan Creech had limited Hazard to one hit and two runs through the first four innings before losing command in the fifth inning. The Tri-City defense also let her down as four of the seven runs in the inning were unearned. Creech finished with a six-hitter, striking out 11 and walking seven.
Tonjaneh Lee led Tri-City at the plate with four hits in four at bats, including a triple and three singles. Creech added three singles in four at bats. Jaylen Deal and Caleigh Cornett contributed two singles each. Emily Day added one single.’
Lee scored the first run when she singled to lead off the second inning and raced around the bases on Cornett’s hit. Lee scored when Destiny Adams was safe on an error. Deal followed with a single to right, then Creech brought in two runs with a single to center.
Hazard cut the lead in half with two runs in the third inning without the benefit of a hit. Three walks, an error, a wild pitch and a passed ball led to the two runs.
Day walked in the third inning and scored on Lee’s triple. Cornett followed with an RBI single to right to push Tri-City lead’s back to four, at 6-2.
Tri-City appeared to put the game away with two runs in the fourth inning as Day and Lee each had RBI hits after Creech had singles and Sydney Layne was safe on a wild pitch after a strikeout.
Kailey Dixon and Alexa Muha walked to start Hazard’s seven-run fifth inning. Laci Davidson singled home one run and Kimberly Hughes singled home two. Emily Blair struck out but was safe on an errant throw when the third strike hit the ground. A ground out by Riley Feltner brought in a run to cut the deficit to 8-6. Samantha Stidham singled home a run, but Rachel Feltner was cut down at the plate for the second out. Justice White doubled home the tying run and Dixon singled home the go-ahead run.
Hazard was close to adding an insurance run with a runner on third in the sixth inning, but Adams, the Tri-City third baseman, fielded a line drive off the bat of Blair and turned it into a double play.
Tri-City had the tying and winning runs on base in the sixth inning but Hughes worked out of the jam with a game-ending strikeout.
Tri-City will return to action Monday at 8 p.m. in a losers bracket game.
Hazard* 002* 070* —* 9 6 2
Tri-City* 042* 200* —* 8 12 3
Hughes and Davidson; Creech and Early. WP — Hughes. LP — Creech.
Reach John Henson at 606-909-4134