Chatt State teams split openers at Region VII tourney
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) -- Ashley Czechner helped Chattanooga State softball celebrate its first-ever Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) Region VII Tournament home game in style Monday afternoon.
Czechner pitched a perfect game to lead the second-ranked Lady Tigers (53-4) to an easy 9-0 win over Jackson State in five innings. The LSU-bound right-hander struck out seven and only once was threatened by a near-hit when Malina Wilkerson threw out the game's lead-off hitter from right field.
Former Grace Academy star Lacye Walker homered to spark a three-run first inning and later added a double to lead an offense that pounded out 13 hits and took advantage of five Jackson State errors.
Chattanooga State added another run in the third and two more in the fourth before Mequilla Franklin's two-run single capped a three-run seventh that brought out the mercy rule.
The Lady Tigers advance to face Columbia State in a winner's bracket game at 10 a.m. ET Tuesday morning.
Columbia beat Cleveland State 5-0 in Monday's first game, but the Lady Cougars stayed alive with a 4-1 elimination-game win over Jackson late Monday night.
Across campus, Chattanooga State baseball didn't fare as well.
The host Tigers couldn't escape a six-run hole in a 9-7 loss to Dyersburg State in the opener of the region baseball bracket.
Chattanooga State rallied to tie the game at 2-all on an Eagles' error and a Tyler Garner RBI single in the second, but Dyersburg scored six unearned runs after a two-out throwing error in the third to take an 8-2 lead.
The Tigers rallied with a run in the sixth and two each in the seventh and eighth, but could not complete the comeback.
With the loss, Chattanooga State falls into the loser's bracket of the double-elimination tournament to face Motlow State in an elimination game Tuesday morning at 10 a.m. ET.
The tournaments, which will send an automatic qualifier to the National Junior College World Series later this month, are being held jointly on Chattanooga State's campus for the first time.