Winfield gains advantage in regional series with 1-0 win over Chapmanville

WINFIELD, W.Va. — In a game where both teams combined for just eight hits and played error-free softball, Winfield prevailed in a tightly-contested Class AA Region IV series opener over visiting Chapmanville, 1-0. The defending Class AA state champions are now one win away from returning to the state tournament.

Winfield’s Madeline Carroll and Chapmanville’s Chloe Murphy took turns posting zeroes on the scoreboard until the third inning. In the top of the frame, the Tigers (25-5) loaded the bases with nobody out. However, Carroll induced a pair of ground balls resulting in outs at the plate. She ended the frame by reeling in a pop up to keep the game scoreless.

“That kind of turned things in our favor a little bit,” said Winfield head coach Steve Hensley. “Then we got the lead. And when you can give a good pitcher a lead, you can win a lot of low-scoring games.”

In the bottom of the inning, the Generals broke the stalemate when Kennedy Schilling connected for an RBI single to score Evie Loyd from second base.

“Obviously with two outs we were running. We had some girls on second base most of the evening. We just couldn’t get that big hit and she came through.”

Carroll stranded a pair of runners in the fourth inning. She went on to toss a five-hit shutout while striking out five batters.

“She did a really good job throwing strikes and staying ahead in the count. The defense played well behind her and kept the game moving. Her demeanor was great. She is just a level-headed pitcher. She doesn’t change too much with the circumstances. That’s probably her best quality. She just stays calm through most situations.”

Murphy also tossed a complete game for the Tigers. She struck out 11 batters and yielded just three hits.

“Chloe Murphy is a great pitcher. She does a great job and throws the ball up, down and in and changes speeds well. We’ve got our work cut out for us.”

Winfield (22-9) leads the best-of-three series, which will continue Wednesday at Chapmanville. The Generals were pushed to a decisive game in their sectional tournament by Poca, before prevailing 6-5.

“I think this team has discovered their own identity. Last week, the sectional we had was tough. Poca really came in here and played well. We were up against it for two games. So this team has kind of built themselves on perseverance.”

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