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Prep Roundup: Franklin County drops double header

MERIDIAN — Franklin County High School’s fast-pitch softball team played better on Saturday than it did on Friday at the Meridian High School Tournament, but the Lady Bulldogs still ended up on the wrong side of the scoring column.

In its first game of the day, Franklin County fell behind early and could not recover in a 7-2 loss to the host Meridian Lady Wildcats.

Meridian jumped on Franklin County starting pitcher Emily Smith to the tune of four runs on five hits, one walk and one hit batter. Smith struck out one batter, but that was it for her and she was charged with the loss.

Emilee Wallace pitched the final four innings and allowed three runs, two earned, on four hits. But those three runs Meridian scored made it a 7-0 ball game before Franklin County finally scored its first run of the game in the bottom of the third inning. The Lady Bulldogs scored their only other run in the bottom of the fifth.

Jarlissa Hopkins went 2-for-4 with a double while Alliejah Echols went 3-for-3 and Carlissa Hopkins went 2-for-3.

Brianna Scruggs pitched all five innings for Meridian and allowed two runs, one earned, on six hits and two walks to go with one strikeout.

Three of Franklin County’s six hits went for extra bases. Alyssa Case and Jamecia Starks each had a triple, and Sierra Bethley had a double. Shelby Smith went 2-for-3.

Franklin County’s second game of the day turned out to be a seesaw battle against Clarkdale in the battle of the Lady Bulldogs. Franklin County had a 7-4 lead after two and a half innings, but Clarkdale rallied to take an 8-7 victory.

Wallace got the start for Franklin County and got tagged by Clarkdale for six runs on five hits, one walk and three hit batters with just one strikeout in three innings.

Franklin County scored two runs in the top of the first inning, but Clarkdale responded with a four-run rally in the bottom of the first. Franklin County retook the lead with a three-run rally in the top of the second and added two more runs in the top of the third for a 7-4 lead.

Once again, Clarkdale would have an answer. Only this time it would take three innings to complete the comeback. Clarkdale scored two run in the bottom of the third to cut Franklin County’s lead to 7-6. Then Clarkdale scored one run in the bottom of the fourth off Harley McKay to tie it a 7-7 and won the game with one run in the bottom of the fifth.

McKay ended up the losing pitcher after allowing two runs, one earned, on one hit and two walks with one strikeout in the final two innings.

Molly McLeod gave up seven runs on four hits, five walks and two hit batters to go with two strikeouts in four innings.

Krislyn Kent and Hayle McKinney accounted for all four of Franklin County’s hits. Kent went 2-for-2 with a double and a triple while McKinney was 2-for-3. Heather Harwell led Clarkdale at the plate, going 2-for-3 with two doubles and Aubree McWilliams had a double.

Franklin County (1-5) begins MHSAA Region 7-3A play on Monday at 6 p.m. at West Marion High School.