MONTGOMERY — Good Hope’s tremendous season ended Saturday at Lagoon Park following a tough 10-5 loss to White Plains at the Class 4A state softball tournament.
The No. 4 Lady Wildcats tallied 15 hits en route to defeating the No. 7 Lady Raiders in a rematch of the West Central Regional Tournament title tilt, which Good Hope won 2-1 earlier this month.
The Red and White opened play in Montgomery on Friday with a 7-2 loss to top-ranked Alabama Christian Academy before bouncing back with a 5-0 win over No. 5 American Christian Academy to advance in the losers’ bracket.
Unfortunately for first-year coach Tim Tucker’s squad, it wasn’t meant to be this year.
“Altogether, the girls played well,” he said. “Pitching was good enough to do what we needed to do. We hit the ball good enough to do what we needed to do. It just came down to a couple of plays. Last week, we made all the plays. This week, we didn’t make all the plays.”
Good Hope led 3-2 entering the fourth inning — Angelina Flanigan smacked a two-run double in the opening frame, and Sidnie English scored on a wild pitch in the third inning — before White Plains plated four two-out runs to go in front 6-3.
Three of those runs were unearned.
Bailey Swann’s RBI double in the fifth frame brought the Lady Raiders back to within two, but the Lady Wildcats nabbed four more runs in the seventh inning to seize control of the contest.
Rebekah Norris added an RBI single late in the game.
Flanigan finished with four hits and two RBIs, while Swann (RBI) and Tucker each had two hits.
Norris (RBI), Abbie Hunt, Morgan Goodwin, KaiLee Shikle and English netted one hit apiece.
Good Hope will lose five seniors — Swann, Tucker, Shikle, Goodwin and Gracie Ray — heading into next season, but Tim Tucker is looking to continue upon this year’s success.
The Lady Raiders won the Class 4A, Area 12 Tournament and West Central Regional Tournament and ended the season with a solid 33-11 record.
“Great season with a great group of girls,” Tucker said. “We don’t want to let this be the last of Good Hope softball. We want to keep the legacy going. We want the younger girls to step up now that five seniors are gone. We’ve got great ballplayers on the team now and great ballplayers sitting in the wings ready to play next year.
“They set a goal this summer, and we started working in June to be here. They played like it all year that they wanted to be here. It wasn’t just a dream. They backed it up with their play on the field.”