• 61°

Emotional win for Callaway

By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY

Daily News

It was a win that meant a little extra.

The Callaway softball team beat a strong Bowdon team 1-0 on Thursday to run its winning streak to seven games.

That was reason enough to celebrate, but the victory also came on the birthday of a beloved member of the Callaway softball family who sadly died last year.

Ken Bartlett, the father of former Callaway player Lydia Bartlett, has been a fixture at the team’s games over the years, and he was always an avid supporter of all the players.

Bartlett, who died in December at the age of 41, was on the minds of all the players following the dramatic win over Bowdon.

“He always loved Callaway softball, and he passed away,” said Robyn McCann, Callaway’s head coach. “Today is his birthday. They put a video on Facebook for him. They’re very thoughtful girls.”

Thursday’s game was scoreless when Callaway came to the plate in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Aaliyah Morman reached on an error leading off, Leijorey Sanders followed with a base hit, and Chaple Butler reached on a fielder’s choice.

With Morman on third representing the winning run, McKenzie Rhodes got the ball in the air for the sacrifice fly, and the celebration was on.

“My heart’s still beating 100 m.p.h., 20 minutes (after the game),” McCann said.

Callaway was in the game thanks to the exceptional pitching of Faith Horton, who threw the eight-inning shutout.

Horton ran into trouble on a few different occasions, but with the help of her defense, she kept Bowdon from crossing home plate.

In the seventh inning Bowdon had the bases loaded and no outs and was unable to score.

Callaway will take an 8-2 record into the start of Region 5-AA play next week.

Callaway hosts Lamar County on Tuesday and visits Heard County on Thursday.