MAGNOLIA — Just like falling to Nashville twice during the regular season only to get a 4A South Regional semifinals win on Sunday, the Bauxite Lady Miners also lost to De Queen in close contests twice during the regular season. On Monday, the Lady Miners defeated the De Queen Lady Lady Leopards 7-3 in the South title game to advance to the 4A State Tournament as the South No. 1 seed.
Bauxite will get a first-round bye and play the winner of Batesville Southside and Pottsville on Friday at 12:30 p.m. at Batesville Southside High School.
It’s been an unlikely scenario for the Lady Miners to claim the South title as they were down 7-0 before coming back to down the Monticello Lady Billies 15-13 in the first round of the regional. Bauxite again was down 2-1 to Nashville in the semis before coming back for a 3-2 victory and were also down 2-0 to De Queen after one inning on Monday.
The Lady Leopards picked up a fielder’s choice RBI and RBI single in the bottom of the first inning, but the Lady Miners responded in the top of the second to take a lead they would never relinquish. Junior Kaia Thornton doubled and scored on senior Cheyenne Harris’ double to left for the 2-1 deficit. Karissa Edmondson and Haley Howard would get out the next two at-bats, but senior Taylor Sledd put Bauxite ahead for good with a 2-run bomb to dead center for the 3-2 lead.
Bauxite junior starter Ruby Hause, huge in the 3-2 win against Nashville, again was big on Monday holding De Queen scoreless until the Lady Leopards added a run in the final inning, by that time with the Lady Miners already up 7-2.
Bauxite wasn’t done hitting the ball out of the park as senior Ashley Redmon walked to lead off the third and scored on freshman Riley Larkin’s 2-run shot for the 5-2 advantage. Redmon added an RBI single in the fourth for the 4-run lead before Harris’ double in the fifth plated Thornton for the 7-2 lead.
Hause gave up three runs (two earned) on just three hits and four walks in a complete seven innings of work.
At the plate, Harris was 3 for 4 with two RBIs, Sledd 2 for 2 with two RBIs, Larkin 1 for 4 with two RBIs, Redmon 1 for 2 with a run and RBI and Thornton and Howard both added hits in the victory.