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Bearcats lose some, win one on the diamond over the weekend:



 Following rare losses to a couple of Tennessee schools Friday at Bill Shelton Field, the No. 2 ranked Cullman Bearcats engaged in a confrontation with Gadsden City that was decided with an ending to excite one team and upset the other.

 A pulled foot on a play at first base after Noah Fondren struck out allowed Maison Goodwin to scamper home with the winning run and Cullman claim an 8-7 decision. This completed five games in three days who were just coming off on Thursday winning the 5A, Area 15 regular season title over long time rival Hartselle.

 Tennessee programs Houston and Collierville visited Friday and ended a 14-game winning streak. The losses were the first by Brent Patterson’s team since they opened with an 8-3 defeat to Northridge in the Hoover Classic on March 24. Cullman has only three losses in a span of four weeks on the diamond.

 Gadsden City attempted to make it three in a row when the Titans scored two in the top half of the first and added a run in the second to lead 3-1 when Cullman came to bat in the last of the third.

 Carter Bowen and Lance Cleveland singled to set the scene for freshman Owen Lovell. Lovell rapped his 12th homer of the season and fourth of the week to put the Bearcats ahead for the first time in the game at 4-3.

 However, the Titants responded with four in the fourth, three coming off a single with the bases loaded in which the ball was also booted in right field for an error. Heading into the bottom of the fourth, the visitors were on top 7-4.

 Fondren got things going for the ‘Cats in the fourth with a walk, Kolby Roberson was safe on an error, Cole Collins singled home Fondren to close the gap to 7-5. Cleveland grounded out to short that brought in Roberson and the ‘Cats were getting close, down by the margin of 7-6.

 Lovell went down the left field line for a double and Collins darted home with the tieing run, scoring all the way from first base.

 Jackson Hill was effective in the final three innings in relief, keeping the Titans off the scoreboard.

 Gadsden City got two quick outs to start the Cullman seventh then Goodwin received a free pass and headed to second on a stolen base.

 Fondren struck out on a 3-2 pitch, but the ball got by the catcher and hit the backstop. Goodwin was moving to third at the time of the strikeout with the throw from the catcher going to the first baseman covering the bag.

 But the throw pulled him off the bag. The field umpire appealed to his home plate partner as a discussion would follow. The field umpire signaled safe with Gadsden City not happy about the decision, but having to accept an upset victory had slipped through the grasp.

 The Bearcats are scheduled to host Class 6A Sparkman in a twinbill Tuesday at Bill Shelton Field weather permitting.

 Then the No. 2 ranked ball club opens the first round of the 5A playoffs with Athens. Game 1 is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Friday with the second to follow at approximately 7 p.m.

 A third game, if needed, would be Saturday with game time not set at the moment.


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A scoreless soccer battle between the Cullman and Florence girls:



 Playing three consecutive days, the Cullman Lady Bearcats ended the week with a victory over Hartselle and followed with ties against Donoho and Florence. The Lady ‘Cats were leg weary Saturday afternoon when they walked off the Cullman Soccer Field following the battle with Florence with nothing gained, nothing lost.

 Cullman returned to campus late Friday night after traveling to Anniston to play Donoho. Several players began Saturday morning in the classroom taking ACT exams before thinking about playing for the third time in three days.

 Neither side was aggressive in attacking the other during the first half, but in the second half, the Lady Bearcats had seven shots on goal while the Lady Falcons attempted four.

 Cullman goalie Hannah Spradlin excelled when the team needed her. She also had support from her teammates in Christina Skinner, Kaitlin Cook, Caitlin Murphree, Brooklen Cook, Morgan Stone and Karla Conterras.

 In the final minute, a foul against Florence gave Cullman a chance to break the scoreless tie. But Brooklen Cook’s attempt never got near the net as the Florence front line deflected the shot and cleared the ball out of the zone.

 It was the sixth time for the Lady Bearcats on the season. Ties are not broken if the games are not sectional assignments.

 The critical part of the season is next week for the Lady ‘Cats. They play at Hartselle Tuesday and at East Limestone Thursday, needing to win both assignments in Section 8 to qualify for the upcoming playoffs.

 Cullman got past Hartselle at home on Thursday when the match went to penalty kicks as the Lady ‘Cats converted and Spradlin allowed the Lady Tigers only two penalty kicks in five attempts.



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Ninth ranked Cullman Lady Bearcats post road win over Arab:



At Arab Sports Complex

Cullman  1  0  3  0  0  3  0  -  7

Arab        0  0  0  0  0  2  0  - 2


WP: Claire Jenkins

LP: Samara Miller



CULLMAN (24-13): Claire Jenkins 1B, 2B, Taiya Ponder 2-1B, 2B, RBI, Hannah Morton 2B, RBI, Hayden Short 2B, RBI, Tiffany Schwaiger 3-1B, 2 RBI, Elli Dixon RBI, McKensie Burks 1B, Kaitlyn Brannon 3-1B.


ARAB: Samara Miller 1B, Kaley Warren 2B, RBI, Kaitlyn Cole 1B, Lynsey Morrow 1B.


 Wanting to get momentum for the stretch run of the 2014 regular season, the Cullman Lady Bearcats are doing that.

 With back-to-back road wins over West Point 12-4 Thursday and Arab 7-2 Friday, the No. 9 team in the 5A rankings look forward to a rematch Tuesday at Hayden then on to serious business with a 5A, Area 15 game at home against Hartselle as the regular season area title hangs in the balance.

 Coming off the West Point victory that moved the Lady Bearcats to 4-1 in the area, coach Stephanie Barlow’s ball club pushed the lead to 4-0 by the middle of the third inning when Hayden Short doubled home a run, Tiffany Schwaiger singled in a run and Schwaiger scored on Elli Dixon’s fielder’s choice to short.

 Jenkins was doing well for Cullman on the mound early. In the first four innings, the right hander allowed one hit and another run to reach base on a dropped throw at first. She had five strikeouts by the time she finished up the fifth inning and was ahead on the scoreboard 4-0.

 Cullman got some more run production when Taiya Ponder brought in Jenkins with a single, Ponder scored on Hannah Morton’s double and Schwaiger drove in Morton with a single to left. The Lady Bearcats were ahead 7-0 going to the last of the sixth.

 After getting two quick outs, Jenkins allowed a single to Samara Miller and Kaley Warren doubled off Ponder’s glove in center to get Miller in with the first run. Shyan Flack’s grounder to second was mishandled, resulting in Warren scoring and Arab getting some life now only down 7-2.

 Consecutive singles from Kaitlyn Cole and Lynsey Morrow loaded the bases before Jenkins retired Lexi Pace on a fly ball to Jamie Flynn in left to end the inning.

 In the Arab seventh, Madison Tidmore drew a leadoff walk then Jenkins regrouped and retired the next three batters in orders on a pop out to Tori Swafford behind the plate, a grounder to Morton at short and a strikeout.

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GIRLS PREP SOCCER REPORT: St. Bernard & Cullman win important games.


  St. Bernard’s Lady Saints are in the AHSAA 1A-4A soccer playoffs for the second consecutive season following a 3-0 victory over Danville at home Thursday afternoon.

 Abigale Bennett compiled a hat trick for the Lady Saints who are now 6-6-1 on the season, finishing 2-2 in the area with both wins against the school from Morgan County.

 Coach Shannon Mescher’s Lady Saints dominated attacking the Danville zone with 23 shots against goalkeeper Susan Fuller. St. Bernard goalie Bree McPherson had to deal with only two shots near the net the entire match.

 Four minutes into the match, Bennett intercepted a pass and pushed the ball by Fuller into the net to put St. Bernard ahead 1-0.

 The Lady Saints extended their advantage to two goals with 28:21 to go in the half on Bennett’s kick from the right side near the Danville goal. St. Bernard had 11 shots on goal in the opening half with half a dozen coming in the first 15 minutes. They led 2-0 at the break.

 Abbie Mescher attempted a penalty kick halfway into the final half that was deflected away by Fuller. Bennett collected the rebound and fired it by Fuller to complete her good performance in helping the Lady Saints qualify for the playoffs that will begin April 26 at the winner of Area 16.

 Logan Ayers, Zana Wilson, Griselda Silva, Greer Cauthan, Meg Borths, Aimee Coates also contributed to the victory by putting pressure on Danville to slow them in the attack and keeping them out of the Lady Saints zone that made it easy for McPherson all game long.

 McPherson defended one shot on goal per half with the back line and the middle part of the defense stepping up when time was needed to win this contest.

 The Lady Saints have two games at home next week. It will be their final regular season appearance in front of the home fans. St. Bernard meets Oneonta Monday and Decatur Heritage Tuesday. The games will begin at 5 p.m.


 Cullman 1, Hartselle 0:

  Victory was bittersweet for the Lady Bearcats in beating their arch rival for the first time in five seasons. The win kept the Lady Bearcats in the chase for a playoff berth needing to beat Hartselle and East Limestone on the road next week to secure the No. 2 seed in 5A, Section 8 behind defending state champion Athens.

 This match went into a 10-minute overtime, remaining scoreless and had to be decided by penalty kicks. Both teams missed on their first of five tries with Hartselle scoring on the second attempt.

 Leah Shaddix tied it up for Cullman in penalty kick # 2. Hartselle went up 2-1 in kicks on the Lady Tigers’ third attempt then were matched by Kaitlyn Cook scoring on the goalie for the Lady Bearcats.

 Goalie Hannah Spradlin stopped the fourth attempt by deflecting it away at the last second. Brooklen Cook stepped up for Cullman and scored to put them ahead 3-2 in the fourth penalty kick segment.

 Hartselle needed to score to tie in its final opportunity. Spradlin denied the Lady Tigers and the Lady Bearcats celebrated their 11th win of the season in 16 matches.

 Coach Jacob Brown’s squad faces Donoho in Anniston Friday afternoon then has a 1 p.m. assignment on the home field against Florence. Brown hopes to play a lot of reserves in the Donoho game to give his starters some rest and have fresh legs vs. Florence to complete three assignments in three days.


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County softball tournament postponed; rescheduled for Wednesday



 WEST POINT – Inclement weather has forced the Cullman County High School softball tournament to be postponed for two consecutive days.

With the change in the weather, the event has been changed as well, going from a double elimination event to single play.

 West Point coach Kevin Sullins told K92 Sports he hopes the weather will clear and give the field enough time to dry so the schedule will begin on Wednesday.

 Here’s the pairings for the 2014 Cullman County softball tournament: All games will be at West Point High School.



Game 1 Wednesday – Vinemont vs. Cold Springs 10:00 a.m.

Game 2 Wednesday – Holly Pond vs. Fairview 11:30 p.m.

Game 3 Wednesday – VM/CS winner vs. HP/FV winner 1:00 p.m.

Game 4 Wednesday – West Point vs. Hanceville 2:30 p.m.

Game 5 Wednesday – Good Hope vs. WP/HV winner 4:00 p.m.

Game 6 Wednesday – Championship game 5:30 p.m.



Thursday – Holly Pond vs. Vinemont 12:00 p.m.

Thursday – Good Hope vs. Fairview 1:30 p.m.

Thursday – West Point vs. HP/VM winner 3:00 p.m.

Thursday – Championship game 4:30 p.m.


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Postseason basketball awards to area players & coaches:


 Prep players and coaches have been recognized by WKUL-FM on its "Dandy Dozen" team for plenty of success during the 2013-14 season. Several that received honors locally from the K92 staff, led by broadcaster Johnny "Flash" Thornton, were also recognized by the Alabama Sportswriters Association over the weekend.



 Meg Gambrill of Holly Pond (Player of the year)

 Baylee Johnson of Cullman (1st team)

 Rachel Finley of Holly Pond (1st team)

 Chloe Harbison of Cold Springs (1st team)

 Natasha Holcombe of Holly Pond (1st team)

 Kacy Thomas of Good Hope (2nd team)

 Kayla Scott of Good Hope (2nd team)

 Kaitlyn Bishop of Good Hope (2nd team)

 Christina Skinner of Cullman (2nd team) 

 Emme Willoughby of Cold Springs (2nd team)

 Taylor Yeager of Fairview (2nd team)

 Bebe Flanigan of Hanceville (2nd team)

 Scott Adams of Holly Pond (Coach of the year)



 Lawson Schaffer of Cullman (Player of the year)

 Colby Adams of Holly Pond (1st team)

 Triston Chambers of Cold Springs (1st team)

 Austin Smith of Holly Pond (1st team)

 Brontae Harris of Hanceville (1st team)

 Seth Swalve of Cullman (2nd team)

 Layne Rice of Cold Springs (2nd team)

 Gunter Morris of Holly Pond (2nd team)

 Chris Smith of Hanceville (2nd team)

 Ryder Jones of West Point (2nd team)

 Lance Stanley of Vinemont (2nd team)

 Elijah Garrison of Fairview (2nd team)

 Bobby Meyer of Cullman (Coach of the year)

 Schaffer was 1st team in Class 5A by the state sportswriters with Meyer being selected as the 5A coach of the year. Meyer led Cullman to a 24-8 record, the 5A, Area 15 title and a trip to the NW Regionals with a ball club that consisted of no player in 5A hoops over six feet, two inches tall.

 Chambers was 1st team in Class 2A, Adams 2nd team in 3A with Harris recognized as 3A honorable mention.

 Johnson and Gambrill were second team performers in 5A & 3A basketball while Finley was honorable mention in 3A as was Haley Freeman of Cold Springs in Class 2A.

 The staff of WKUL-FM congratulates these players and the coaches for giving us a wonderful 2013-14 season in which a record nine teams qualified for the regional round of the AHSAA playoffs.


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