Nix's walk-off enables Bullard to sweep Waco-Robinson; regional finals up next

May 17—BULLARD — Mattie Nix stroked a dramatic walk-off base hit with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning to give Bullard a 3-2 win over Waco-Robinson in Game 2 of a Class 4A, Region III semi-final that was played before a packed house at Dobrinski Field Friday evening.

The win gave Bullard (33-6-1) a 2-0 series sweep over the Rockets (32-9).

Bullard moves on to face Liberty (38-2) in the regional final for the second-straight season. Liberty swept Salado, 2-0, Friday, winning by scores of 8-2 and 8-3, to punch its ticket to the regional final.

Bullard trailed 2-0 going into the bottom of the seventh inning and with two outs, a rally for the ages was launched.

Zaylee Zahirniak got aboard on a fielder's choice and lead-off batter Kirstin Malone followed by drawing a walk, which set the table for the Lady Panthers' hottest hitter over the past four games, Brooklyn Brannen (8-15, .533, 3 home runs, two doubles).

Brannen delivered once again, by smacking a double into center field that was deep enough to score Zahirniak and Malone, making the score, 2-2.

Nix, a senior who has signed with Northeast Texas Community College, had her turn at the plate next and on the second pitch from the Rockets' Raelynn Van Zee, she smoked the ball over the head of Reese Tate, Robinson's center fielder, who appeared to not get a good read on the ball. Brannen was running on contact and made it around to score from second, giving Bullard the triumph.

Bayle Walker and Kenzie Roberts had a base hit each for Bullard.

Robinson scored its first run in the opening frame and then extended its lead to 2-0 when Van Zee lifted a solo home run well over the wall in left field to lead off the top of the fourth inning.

Brannen started the game for the Lady Panthers and pitched 6.1 innings of six-hit softball. The two runs she allowed were both earned.

Brannen struck out eight and walked two.

Anistyn Foster came in to record the final-two Rocket outs, one of which was a strike out, in the top of the final segment.

Van Zee went the distance in the circle for Robinson and was the losing pitcher. She surrendered three runs, all earned on five hits, fanned 10 and walked seven.