'A' for effort: Rams come up short, but still shine at State

May 1—Raceland's trip to the All 'A' state tournament this season might not have ended the way the team had hoped, but the Rams certainly managed to turn some heads.

"It was a great experience," Raceland coach Scott Adkins said. "This was pretty much the same team that went last year so we knew what to expect. We'd planned for it."

Raceland went 2-1 in pool play on Saturday, picking up a 9-1 win against Somerset and a 6-2 victory against (Covington) Holy Cross.

The Rams' one loss in pool play was to the eventual All 'A' runner up Hancock County by a 1-0 final.

The lone run came in the top of the final frame when Hancock County's Madyson Higdon drove in Layni Roberts. Roberts had reached on a hit-by-pitch to start the seventh inning.

Raceland then kicked off tournament play on Sunday with the first game of the day at 8:30 a.m. in a matchup against Livingston Central.

The Cardinals are ranked third in the state, according to RPI data, and entered the contest with a 22-3 record.

The Rams gave up just one hit in the tournament game. It came from the Livingston Central lead-off batter before the Rams' ace pitcher Davanna Grubb denied opponent batters the rest of the way.

Unfortunately for Raceland, the one hit for the Cardinals became a run on a groundout later in the inning.

"(Grubb) did what she needed to do, we just didn't give her the support like we normally do," Adkins said. "We knew we would face some tough pitching down there and that's kind of what held us back was the pitching we faced."

Livingston Central defeated Hancock County, 8-6, in the championship game.

"For us, it came down to a one-run game," Adkins said. "The two teams that beat us were in the finals. So, I would say we were probably one of the top three teams there. It was a good weekend."

Regardless of the end result, Raceland left Owensboro with a 15-5 scoring margin across four games.

Grubb was a force pitching throughout the All 'A' state event and was named to the All-Tournament team.

"She was incredible," Adkins said. "She pitched one heck of a weekend. It's a big honor for her and she deserved it. She did her job in all of those games, as did Jill Riffe for that matter."

Riffe allowed just three hits in the game and gave up just one earned run through seven innings in the circle in the win over Holy Cross.

Adkins thinks the experience gained in these games will help fuel the team as they near the postseason stretch.

"We're still young in some aspects of our game," Adkins said. "And we're still not where we want to be yet. I think we can get back on track now after this weekend."

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