Special day for senior
Spinks delivers decisive home run
by By Kevin Eckleberry Sports Editor
If it was her final game in her home ballpark, LaGrange High’s Karsin Spinks made it one to remember.
The Lady Grangers were trailing the Troup Lady Tigers 3-1 when Spinks stepped to the plate with two on and one out in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Spinks was down in the count 1-2 when she got a pitch to her liking, and she didn’t let it go to waste.
The senior left-hander drove the ball over the center-field fence for a three-run home run, giving her team a 4-3 lead.
LaGrange ended up scoring seven runs in the inning en route to an 11-3 victory.
While there’s a chance LaGrange could return home for a playoff series down the road, it’s also possible Tuesday marked the final home game for Spinks and the other two seniors, Emily Anderson and Taylor Livingston.
Spinks helped make sure the seniors would go out winners by delivering her clutch home run.
The pitch, Spinks said, “was right where I like it. I like the high ones, and it was right there.”
The inning began with a walk to Taylor Storey, and after a groundout, Anderson walked.
With a pair of runners on, Spinks fell into a two-strike hole, and she just wanted to make sure she made contact.
“I choked up just to put the ball in play, and it carried over,” Spinks said.
With two outs, Leighton Parker reached on an error to keep the inning alive, and Livingston followed with a base hit.
After Destiny Gay walked, Leighton Parker’s base hit brought in another run, and it was 5-3.
Livingston and Gay each scored on wild pitches to make it 7-3, and Te’a Winston’s base hit drove in the inning’s final run.
LaGrange kept it going in the bottom of the sixth.
Spinks led off, and she made it second when her hard-hit flyball deflected off an outfielder’s glove.
After Kuerzi was hit by a pitch, Livingston’s base hit brought in Spinks to make it 9-3.
Gay was then hit by a pitch, and Parker followed with a base hit that drove in two runs, and the game ended because of the run rule.
LaGrange head coach Jan Jones said her team did a nice job of overcoming a rocky start.
“I thought we were pressing. We told them to just relax and swing the bat,” Jones said. “We just had to swing the bat like we’re capable of doing.”
LaGrange struck first with a run in the bottom of the first inning.
Winston led off with a single, Anderson’s sacrifice bunt moved her to second, and Makenzie Traylor’s two-out double plated the first run.
LaGrange held that 1-0 lead until Troup scored three runs in the top of the third inning.
The inning began innocently enough with a popout and a strikeout, but Ashley Murphy was hit by a pitch to get things started.
Alex Duncan, Troup’s leading hitter, then lined the ball into the outfield for a single, and the Lady Tigers had a couple of runners on.
Considering Duncan is hitting better than .600 this season with six home runs, Jones was just happy to hold her to a base hit.
“She hit a line drive with two outs. I said, I’ll take it,” Jones said. “We had two outs. The problem was we didn’t get the next one.”
Next up for Troup was Hanna Lane, and she hit what appeared to be a harmless pop-up.
The ball landed in right field between a couple of LaGrange players, though, and two runs scored on the base hit, and Troup had a 2-1 lead.
Hayley Morris then reached on an error, allowing another run to score, and LaGrange was in a 3-1 hole.
Troup held on to that two-run lead until the decisive fifth inning.
“I was proud of them,” Jones said. “We were able to overcome the tough inning.”
Anderson went the distance for LaGrange to improve to 16-4 on the season, while Emily Green took the loss for Troup.
LaGrange will finish its regular season on Thursday at Carrollton, and a win will wrap up third place in Region 5-AAAA.
Troup will finish its season on Thursday at home against Shaw.
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