North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL

March 26, 2014

Softball: Hayden unbeaten in Gulf Shores tournament, takes No. 2 seed in brackets

By Robert Carter
North Jefferson News

GULF SHORES — It's been a great Spring Break for Hayden's softball team so far.

The Wildcats, who remain the third-ranked team in the Class 5A Alabama Sports Writers Association rankings, won all five pool-play games at the Coast Classic II tournament in and near Gulf Shores. It's a 60-team affair that annually draws some of the top teams in the state and the Southeast.

The Cats began play Monday with a 1-0 win over Grissom in five innings, in which Hayden pitcher Sharley Miller threw a no-hitter; she missed a perfect game by just one base on balls. They then took down Pelham 6-1, in which Katie Parr smashed a pair of two-run home runs.

Hayden also defeated Madison County 8-0 in which Miller gave up one hit and struck out six on five innings, and Brooke Meadows was 3-for-3 at the plate with two doubles and two RBIs.

The Wildcats blanked Springville by a 5-0 score, keyed by Miller's bases-loaded double in the fourth that brought all runners home. They then defeated St. James by a 5-1 tally.

The five wins earned Hayden the second overall seed in the single-elimination bracket on Wednesday, giving them a first-round bye. Cordova took the top seed, and Curry — the top-ranked team in Class 5A — is fourth. If form holds, Hayden and Curry would face each other in the championship game Wednesday at 9 p.m.