By LINDSEY WOOD
The Estill County High School softball team headed into the district tournament 15-11. In their final regular season games, Estill lost 16-6 in an interesting game against Lafayette, crushed Breathitt County 13-0 at home on Senior Night, and lost their last away game 3-2 against South Laurel. In the weekend to follow, the Engineers were set to take on Harrison County and Tates Creek in a home triangle, but both games were cancelled due to the rain. Estill came out strong in the first game of the district tournament on Monday, though: they defeated Owsley County 18-0.
Last year, Estill played their best game of the season against Lafayette, getting the win against a very tough team. At the start of this game, it appeared that the Engineers might repeat this result. After Lafayette got ahead 4-0 in the first inning, Estill rallied to score three runs of their own. Lafayette answered with one run the next inning and four more in the next, but the Engineers didn’t go down without a fight, scoring three runs in the bottom of the fifth. With the score 10-6, the teams headed into the seventh inning. Unfortunately, Lafayette’s bats came alive this final inning; they racked up six more runs, getting the 16-6 win.
While this loss was disappointing, the Engineers would have a chance to redeem themselves the next day as they celebrated Senior Night in a home matchup against Breathitt County. Estill mercy-ruled Breathitt in four innings. Estill’s senior pitcher shut down Breathitt’s lineup, and the Engineers’ offense was hot all game. Estill got off to an early 3-0 lead in the first and capped it off by scoring ten more in the third.
The Engineers’ last regular season game of the season would be against South Laurel. To start, South Laurel got up 2-0 in the first, but Estill evened the score in the third. The score remained tied 2-2 until the bottom of the seventh inning, when South Laurel finally drove in a run with a base hit to centerfield. This was a gritty game, and the Engineers were upset that they lost but proud of the way they battled.
With the regular season finished, the Estill headed into post-season play. In the first round of the district tournament, the top-seeded Engineers faced the bottom-seeded Owsley County Owls. Kaylee Covey pitched a no-hitter, and Estill tee’d off against Owsley’s weak pitching. The Engineers came out hot and did not slow down until they got the mercy-rule. This attitude is exactly what they Engineers need to maintain as they take on the Powell County Pirates wednesday at 6 p.m. for the district championship.