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Sam Scott's teammates meet her at home plate after she homered in the first inning of Munford's state tournament game against Seymour on Wednesday in Murfreesboro. That was all the offense Munford would need in a 1-0 win. Photo by Jeff Ireland
Murfreesboro - Just before the bottom of the seventh inning started Wednesday afternoon in Munford's Class AAA State Softball Tournament opening game against Seymour, Lady Cougar head coach Glenn Goulder was nervous about his team's 1-0 lead.
“It's hard to make one run stand up," Goulder said to his assistant coaches.
It turned out Goulder had nothing to worry about.
Senior Tara Comer retired the first two batters of the inning.
The third batter, Kaitlin Atkins, singled to left, breaking up Comer's no-hitter.
But Comer got Reid Ballard to ground out to Munford shortstop Maddison Welch to end the game, finishing off a dominant performance and giving Munford a 1-0 win.
The Lady Cougars moved on to play Dickson County in round two Wednesday night, but didn't fare as well, falling 7-1.
Munford now plays Maryville on Thursday at 10 a.m. in an elimination game.
“I'm feeling really good," said Comer, who struck out three and walked two in the win over Seymour. "I'm proud of my team. My defense really came through today.”
Munford (35-10) managed just one hit off Seymour pitcher Carly Lewis, but it was all they needed.
Freshman Sam Scott made the most of her first state tournament at-bat when she crushed a homer to left field. Lewis retired the next 19 batters, but took the loss.
“It was crazy," Scott said about the homer, her third of the season. "I was just like, 'Get far.' When I saw it go out, I was ecstatic. I was really happy. I've heard that pitcher was a good pitcher, so getting that hit was a big deal.”
The win was Munford's second in three state tournament appearances.
“The young lady we faced was a tremendous pitcher," Goulder said. "She had a 0.24 ERA and 299 strikeouts this year. But we played really strong defense behind Tara. Tara threw a great game. Matched her pitch for pitch And of course the homer by Sam Scott was tremendous. That was the difference in the ball game.”
Seymour (41-7) advanced a runner to second just once when runners reached second and third with two outs in the second inning, but a ground out ended the inning.
In the fourth, Comer caught a line drive and doubled off the runner at first to end another threat.
In game two, Dickson County (34-13) scored three times in the bottom of the first and Munford never really got back in the game.
Munford trailed 4-0 when Alex Stanford hit a solo homer to left, but Dickson County answered with three more runs in the bottom of the frame.
Stanford started in the circle for Munford, but was relieved by Scott in the first inning without recording an out.
Comer relieved Scott with two outs in the bottom of the fourth and pitched the final two innings.
Stanford was 2 for 3 for Munford and Maggie Johnson, Christina Cantrell and Alex Turner each had one hit for Munford.
Dickson County had 11 hits, led by a 4-for-4 game from Rachel Rife.
Brooklin Lee got the win for Dickson County, striking out four and walking none.