If the The Pilot Grove Lady Tigers softball team doesn’t have a rabbits foot laying around somewhere in the dugout, they should consider getting one after Saturday’s Cairo Tournament.
While finishing first in the tournament with a record of 3-0, the Lady Tigers also won all three games by a single run by beating Schuyler County 4-3 in Game 1, Moberly 2-1 in the semifinals and Macon 4-3 in the championship game.
The three wins put Pilot Grove at 8-2 on the season.
Pilot Grove coach Neal Bailey said the girls have been working with significant intent in practice and the results are showing in games “We played well all day,” Bailey said. “Offensively we are getting production all the way through the order. Defensively things are really coming together. The girls are playing relaxed and more fluid with each game.”
Playing relaxed may have also helped the Lady Tigers win the opening game against Schuyler County. While trailing for pretty much the entire game, Pilot Grove rallied back from a 3-1 deficit after 3 1/2 by pushing across three runs in the bottom half of the fourth for the victory.
Samarah Bailey picked up the win in the circle for Pilot Grove with another double-digit strikeout performance. While setting down 11 batters in the game, Bailey also gave up just three runs on three hits and one walk.
As for the hitting, the Lady Tigers managed just three in five innings with senior Melanie Wolfe going 1-for-1 with a double and one RBI. Leah Vollrath finished the game with a RBI-single while Emily Schupp added one single.
In the semifinal round against Moberly, a Class 3 school, the Lady Tigers scored all the runs they would need in one inning by pushing across two runs in the top-half of the fourth for a 2-1 victory.
Bailey again picked up the win for the Lady Tigers by striking out 10 batters and giving up just one run on three hits. The win was Bailey’s seventh of the season in nine games.
Pilot Grove also out-hit Moberly 8-3, with Grace Phillips going 2-for-3 with one RBI. Natalie Rentel and Leah Vollrath also had two hits while Reagan McFatrich added a single and one RBI and Abby Schupp with one single.
In the championship game against Macon, the Lady Tigers had another battle on their hands  while playing to a 3-3 tie through sixth innings.
Although Pilot Grove got off to a great start with two runs in the first and one again in the third to go up 3-0, Macon would rally back with a trio of runs in the sixth to tie it at 3-all. Then, in the bottom-half of the seventh, Pilot Grove loaded the bases on a lead-off single by Emily Schupp, a double to left by Melanie Wolfe and a walk by Natalie Rentel before ending the game on a ground out into a fielder’s choice by Abby Schupp for the game winner.
Wolfe also picked up the complete-game victory for Pilot Grove, her first of the season. In seven innings, Wolfe struck out four batters and gave up just three runs on six hits.
Wolfe also had a big game at the plate for the Lady Tigers by going 2-for-3 with a double, home run and two RBIs. Bailey also doubled in the game while Rentel and Abby Schupp added a single and one RBI each. Emily Schupp, Reagan McFatrich and Grace Phillips finished the game one single each.