Piedmont softball is headed back to the state tournament for the 10th time, and for Piedmont head coach Rick Scott, it’s the sweetest of them all.
Scott’s Lady Wildcats beat Tahlequah 3-0 on Thursday to sweep through their regional and on to next week’s state tournament in Oklahoma City. They did it behind pitcher Kassidy Scott, who threw 17 scoreless innings in two days while driving in eight runs and hitting a pair of mammoth home runs.
“She’s just a beast,” Scott said of his daughter. “She took over against a good hitting team today and shut them down. We played fantastic defense behind her, too.”
Piedmont will face Carl Albert (31-6) in the Class 5A State Tournament next Thursday at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium.
“With the way this year started out and where we’re at now, anything can happen,” Scott said of a tumultuous season that started with Piedmont slumping and included a two-game suspension for Scott in the middle of the year. “These girls and coaches that I have are so awesome. They found a way to win and get another regional championship.”
Kassidy Scott gave herself all the support she needed on the day in the top of the first inning. Scott lined a 3-0 pitch into the right-center field gap to score Ashlyn Ratliff to give Piedmont a 1-0 lead. The Lady ‘Cats scored single runs on fielder’s choices in the second and seventh innings.
“We left too many runners on, but we came through when we needed to,” Rick Scott said.
Controversy emerged in the sixth inning when Tahlequah pitcher Lindsay Wade hit Scott with a pitch for the second time in as many at-bats. The home plate umpire issued a warning to Wade for throwing at Scott, which drew the ire of Tigers head coach Matt Davis. Davis was ultimately ejected for arguing the call.
His team found some momentum after his ejection, but never mounted a serious rally.
“This makes everything we’ve been through this year worth it,” Scott said. “We have the opportunity now to do what we wanted to when the year started.”