Grangers top Troup at home, edge closer to region title

Published 9:56 pm Thursday, September 14, 2023

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Undefeated in the region.

LaGrange just keeps inching closer to a region title and got one step closer on Thursday night when the team defeated cross-town rivals Troup 6-3 to complete the region sweep of the Tigers. 

“This puts us in a really good place as we get closer to the region tournament and it always feels better when you beat Troup,” LaGrange outfielder Wood said.

In a rain-soaked Granger Park, Wood delivered one of the biggest hits of her Granger career in the bottom of the fifth inning. After the Tigers cut the deficit to just one run, Wood hit a missile over the left field wall, landing right near the student section, who were happy to have a temporary souvenir from their peer.

“I knew it was gone,” Wood said of her home run when it left the bat. “I knew it was going to travel far, that was one of the furthest I’ve ever hit the ball.”

This was the second time this season that the Tigers took an early lead on their rivals only to see it slip away. Hadilee Arnold batted into a fielder’s choice that allowed Camdyn Bassett to score in the top of the second inning to break the deadlock.

The Grangers showed some resiliency like they have all season to respond.

“We go through the ups and downs and stay together as a team,” Mobley said. “We keep together, play together and just keep loving one another.

“We always have each other’s backs in any situation.”

LaGrange responded quickly, scoring four runs in the bottom of the second to take a lead that they would never surrender.

Tatum Nation got the scoring started for the Granger when she hit a one-run single to tie the game. Ta’Niya Taylor scored on a passed ball to give the Grangers their first lead of the game.

Jasia Swanson scored on a wild pitch before an error allowed Abby McGill to score.

The Tigers were eventually able to cut the deficit in half when Madeira Sirmons hit a one-run single in the top of the fourth.

Despite being on the losing end, Sirmons put together a big offensive showing, going 3-for-3 on the day. 

The Tigers trimmed the deficit down to just one run in the top of the fifth inning when Kaitlyn Smalley launched a double to right field. Unfortunately for the road team, they could not tie the game despite getting a runner on second base with one out.

It was truly a game of missed opportunities for the Tigers, who outhit the Grangers 7-4 but committed two costly errors.

After Wood made it a two run lead, Nation drove in her second run of the evening on a sacrifice fly to make it 6-3 LaGrange.

“Hudson hits in the four spot for a reason and that’s her seventh home run of the season,” Mobley said. “She amazes me with her poise and focus.”

The Tigers got runners on first and second with no outs in the top of the seventh, but Zoe Thompson was able to work herself out of a jam with some strong defense behind her.

“Her backup defense was phenomenal tonight,” Mobley said. “We made a lot of great defensive plays.”

Thompson pitched a complete game for the Grangers, allowing just seven hits and three earned runs over the course of seven innings.

Kimberly Reynolds, Tatiana Dudley, Nation and Wood all had a hit apiece for the Grangers.

Troup had Sirmons with three hits and Haley Kitchens, Anna Grace Keller, Sheniyah Philpot and Smalley all with one hit each.

Keller got the start on the mound before making way for Bassett. 

LaGrange (10-7) is still perfect in region play (8-0) and will play a non-region doubleheader against Troup and Callaway on Saturday in a tournament at Callaway High. The Grangers will likely already have their eyes on a mammoth region game at home next Thursday against Trinity Christian. 

Troup (6-7) is fourth in the region (3-4) and will play a tough non-region game on the road to East Coweta on Friday before taking part in the tournament at Callaway on Saturday.