By Bobby Mathews, Sports Editor
ALBERTVILLE — The Springville Tigers are headed to the state championship tournament after taking out Fort Payne 4-3 here during the AHSAA 6A Regional softball tournament.
Springville opened up the scoring with a two-run double by Shelby Hathcock in the top of the first to score Bekah Hargrove and Tori Barnes. It was Hathcock’s third double in three games, and it staked the Tigers to a 2-0 victory.
Fort Payne fought back in the bottom of the inning to tie things up, but things wouldn’t stay knotted for long. Riley Ruple reached on an error and scored Leah Bowden to make it 3-2, Tigers.
Hargrove grounded into a fielder’s choice that scored Ashlyn Cooley from third, and that gave Springville enough cushion for the win.
Bella Bullington pitched seven innings, allowing three runs on nine hits while striking out six and walking two.
Hargrove went 1-for-4 with an RBI and scored, while Barnes went 1-for-4 and scored. Hathcock went 2-for-3 with 2 RBI, and Bowden went 1-for-2 with a walk and scored. Cooley went 2-for 3 and scored. Ruple had 1 RBI.
The Tigers went 3-0 through the region, defeating Mountain Brook 12-1 and then Scottsboro 7-3 to get to the finals of the winners’ bracket.