CHIPLEY — The Jay Royals defeated the Chipley Lady Tigers 8-6 to win the Class 1A Rural District 2 Softball District championship Thursday night in Chipley.
The Royals surged ahead in the second inning, turning a 1-0 deficit to a 4-1 lead, beginning with Camile Driver’s score on a Chipley error. Destiny Herring crossed home a few minutes later on Harley Tagert’s single. Chassity McCranie returned home on Michaela Stewart’s line drive single, then Tagert added a 4th run off of Ashlyn Geck’s double.
Driver scored on a pitcher error in the bottom of the third to give the Royals a 5-1 lead, but Chipley rallied in the top of the fourth, beginning with Mallory Dean’s lead-off triple, which Dean brought home on Sarah Gilbert’s RBI to second. Gilbert crossed home plate following Kari Waldrip’s line drive across third base.
Kara Bush hit one deep into outfield with the bases loaded. The ball was nabbed by a Royals outfielder at the fence, but not before Waldrip and Bush scampered back to home to tie things up 5-5.
The tie was short lived, however, as Stewart and Olivia Wright both added runs for Jay in the bottom of the fourth, giving the Royals an edge they would not relinquish.
Paige Carter added Chipley’s final score in the 5th, scoring after Sara Kaye Compton walked after being struck by a pitch.
The Royals’ Taylor Moore added the final run of the game, capitalizing on her lead-off single then coming home on Bayleigh Upton’s line drive single.
Both teams will advance to the regional play-offs.