Lady Eagles rally to advance in playoffs

PEARLAND — When a team loses the first game in the playoffs in a best-of-three series, it becomes very difficult to win the next two to take the series.

Dawson dropped the first game to the Foster Lady Falcons 6-4, but the Lady Eagles came out with a lot of energy and fire in the second game. The determination to not let their season end was evident from the very first inning.

The Lady Eagles opened the scoring with a run in the bottom of the first inning thanks to a run-scoring triple by Rose Sullivan for a 1-0 lead.

Foster took the lead at 2-1 in the top of the third on a single, a fielder's choice, and a double that plated a pair of runs.

But Dawson answered in their half of the third when Sullivan doubled and later scored on an error making the score 2-2.

It appeared that Foster came up with the biggest blow of the game when Foster pitcher Kristen Clark delivered a three-run homer over the left centerfield wall for a 5-2 advantage in the top of the fifth.

The Lady Eagles didn't panic and scored two run in the bottom of the fifth to cut the margin to 5-4 thanks to three walks by Clark and scoring singles by Megan Stone and Jillian Guse.

Dawson tied up the game in the sixth when Turner singled and scored on a double by Baylee Malone making the score 5-5.

The Lady Eagles used the bottom of the seventh to win the game when Stone walked and Guse singled. With one out, Rylee Rodriguez was intentionally walked to load the bases. Clark got a strikeout for the second out, but Turner delivered the fatal blow with a hot grounder to second that was muffed which sent Stone across the plate for the game-winner.

The win sent both team to a third and deciding game for the series.

Stone picked up the win after allowing six hits, two runs, one walk, and four strikeouts. Kaylan Howard pitched 1 2/3 innings and allowed four hits, three runs, two walks, and a home run before Stone returned to the pitching circle.

Sullivan was 2-for-5 with on run scored and one RBI. Malone was 2-for-3 with on RBI. Stone was 1-for-2 with a run scored and one RBI. Turner was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and one RBI. Guse was 3-for-5 with one RBI.

Dawson 7 - Foster 4

Dawson and Foster were both in a win or go home situation after splitting two playoff games. Foster, who entered the playoffs as the defending 4A Region III champions, were favored to win the series, but a determined Dawson team wasn't ready to give in to the Lady Falcons.

Foster scored the first run of the game, but Dawson answered in their half of the first frame to tie up the game 1-1.

The Lady Falcons added another run in the top of the third, but the Lady Eagles added two more in their half for a 3-2 advantage.

Jillian Guse opened up the frame with a single and scored on a double by Rylee Rodriguez to tie up the game. Rose Sullivan hit a run scorind single to give Dawson back the lead.

Two runs scored in the top of the fifth for Foster to give them the lead again 4-3.

The bottom of the fifth proved to be the fatal blow for the Lady Falcons as Sullivan produced a run-scoring double. A sacrifice by Niki Turner scored courtesy runner Olivia Medieta. Malone singled home Sullivan, and Stone singled home courtesy runner Ivy Smith.

That gave Dawson a 7-4 lead that stood till the final Foster out sending the Lady Eagles to the next round.

Megan Stone picked up the win as she gave up only two runs on three hits while walking one. Rylee Rodriguez pitched one inning in the middle of the game and gave up two runs on four hits while walking one and striking out one.

Top hitters included Jillian Guise who was 1-for-3 with one run scored. Rodriguez was 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Rose Sullivan was 3-for-4 with one run scored and two RBIs. Baylee Malone, Niki Turner, and Megan Stone each scored a run.

Dawson will host Stratford on Friday, May 2 at 7:00 p.m. in a one-game playoff.