Sports

Lady Panthers crowned area champs

Hackleburg’s Lady Panthers win the Area 14 Class 1A championship. Top, left to right, are Coach Morgan McCarley, Bella Rackard, Victoria Fretwell, Abby Minihan, Lexi Browning, Ellie Nichols, Heidi Hudson, Maddie Burt and Coach Randall Raper. Bottom, left to right, are Braylynn Pope, Saylor Cooper, Carson Browning, Macy Moore, Laine Steward and EmaLeigh Blackburn.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
The Hackleburg Lady Panthers were crowned the Area 14 Class 1A champions on Tuesday, May 3, following wins against the Belgreen Bulldogs.
The Panthers won their first game of the championship series 12-7, and won the second game 12-8, securing the title and moving onto the North Regional softball playoffs in Florence.
The Panthers also defeated Phillips 19-1 and Vina 8-1 during their run to the championship.

The Lady Panthers will go up against Athens Bible on Thursday, May 12, at 9 a.m.

Lady Aggies crowned area runners up

Hamilton’s Lady Aggies win runners up for the Area 12 Class 4A championship. Top, left to right, are Kaylee Ables, Ava Cooper, Aubrey Sorrells, Michaela Otts, Addi Wilson, Maggie Harbor, Madison Metcalf, Hope Smith and Lexi Dobbins. Bottom row, from left, are Ella Kelley, Hannah Hogue, Anna Wilson, Paisley Sorrells, Leah Lawler, Emily Jones and Megan Jones.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
The Hamilton Lady Aggies softball team finished as runners up in the Area 12 Class 4A playoffs after two wins and two losses on Tuesday, May 3.

Track teams take on state

Hackleburg’s Daniel Cooper (center) takes off during the 1A boys’ 100-meter dash on Friday, May 6 in Cullman during the 2022 AHSAA State Track Meet.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
Teams and individuals from schools in Marion County competed in the 2022 AHSAA state track meet from Thursday, May 5 to Saturday, May 7. Marion County was represented well in the 1A-3A meet hosted in Cullman and the 4A-7A meet hosted in Gulf Shores.

 

County teams make strong showing at sectionals

Marion County’s Wyatt Franks falls after clearing the bar on the pole vault.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
WINFIELD — Winfield hosted three track meets at once on Friday, April 29 and Saturday, April 30. Teams from the surrounding area traveled to Winfield to compete in the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s 1A section 3, 3A section 4 and 4A section 3 track meets.

Marion County slides into win over Vina

The Marion County Red Raiders easily dispatched Vina 11-4 on Tuesday, April 19.
Marion County got things moving in the first inning, when Zach Lamoureux doubled on the first pitch of the at bat, scoring one run.
Marion County scored four runs in the sixth inning. Marion County's big bats in the inning were led by a single by Lamoureux, a sac fly by Cade Adkins and an error on a ball put in play by Caleb Knight.

Pirates take win over Sumiton Christian

The Winfield Pirates were victorious over Sumiton Christian, 6-2 Tuesday, April 19.
Brady May earned the win for Winfield. May lasted two innings, allowing two hits and zero runs while striking out one and walking one. John David Ray, Jarett Hosch and Spencer Haney all put in work in relief out of the bullpen, steering their team towards the victory.
Braden Woodard took the loss for Sumiton Christian. The pitcher surrendered two runs on four hits over one and two-thirds innings, walking one.
Tyler Ingle started the game for Sumiton Christian.

Aggies fight to round three in playoffs

Bryant Loving gets ready to fire towards first base.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON —  The Hamilton Aggies fought their way to the third round of the AHSAA baseball playoffs after wins against the St. John Paul II Falcons and the Oneonta Redskins in the first two rounds of playoff baseball.
Hamilton began their run with two big wins against the Falcons on Friday, April 22, in Hamilton.

Hackleburg stops at second round

Trett Irvin winds up for a pitch against Coosa Christian.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
TUSCUMBIA — The Hackleburg Panthers bowed out in the second round of the playoffs this past week after two defeats to Covenant Christian on Thursday, April 28.
Hackleburg got a big win in the first game of the first round of playoffs against Coosa Christian of Gadsden.

Winfield Pirates end season in first round of playoffs

Winfield’s Rain Nolan (#23) gets ready to swing at an incoming pitch.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
WINFIELD — The Winfield Pirates’ 2022 season drew to a close on Friday night, April 22 after back-to-back losses against the Elkmont Red Devils.
Elkmont batted first, and scored two runs. After shutting down the Pirates in the bottom of the first inning, the Red Devils scored one more point in the top of the second that also went unanswered.
The game entered a scoreless stalemate from the third to fifth inning, before the Red Devils scored two more points in the top of the sixth.

Lady Aggies softball roundup

Lady Aggie Michaela Otts winds up in the game against Carbon Hill on April 19.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
Hamilton vs.
Marion County
The Hamilton Lady Aggies defeated the Marion County Lady Red Raiders in a game that lasted just five innings on Thursday, April 14 in Hamilton.
Hamilton won the game 11-0, keeping the Lady Red Raiders off of the scoreboard and keeping them to very few hits.
Hamilton scored just one run in the first two innings of the game, but in the bottom of the third inning, they began to let fly from the plate.

Hamilton claims victory of St. John Paul II in blow-out fashion

The Hamilton Aggies blew out St. John Paul II 10-4 on Friday, April 22.
Hamilton fired up the offense in the first inning. Eli Jackson hit a solo homer.
Hamilton scored four runs in the fifth inning. The big inning was thanks to a single by Joseph Aycock and an error on a ball put in play by Jackson.
Jackson was credited with the victory for Hamilton. Jackson surrendered four runs on eight hits over seven innings, striking out four.
El Shelton took the loss for St. John Paul II. The bulldog allowed nine hits and ten runs over five innings, striking out six.

Pirates defeat Haleyville despite allowing a three-run inning

The Winfield Pirates weathered a scare by Haleyville in the seventh inning where Winfield coughed up three runs, but the Pirates  still won 8-5 on Saturday, April 9. The big inning for Haleyville came thanks to a triple by Bo Mitchell, a single by Grant Wakefield, and a double by Brody Gravitt.
Winfield got things moving in the first inning, when Hunter Busha reached on a dropped third strike.
Winfield notched three runs in the third inning. Tyler Mays and Davis Bowen all moved runners across the plate with RBIs in the inning.

Early lead for Hackleburg seals Red Raiders’ fate

Marion County Red Raiders watched the game slip away early and couldn't recover in a 6-3 loss to Hackleburg on Monday, April 18. Hackleburg scored on an error, a fielder's choice by Trett Irvin, and a single by Tucker Vickery in the second inning.
Hackleburg opened up scoring in the second inning, when an error scored one run for Hackleburg.
Irvin led Hackleburg to victory on the hill. Irvin surrendered two runs on one hit over three innings, striking out seven. Jaxon Fincher and Vickery entered the game out of the bullpen and helped to close out the game in relief.

Red Raiders’ playoff run ends in first round

The Marion County Red Raiders had their playoff run ended after the first round following two defeats to Covenant Christian on Friday, April 22.
The Red Raiders fell behind early and couldn't come back in a 16-1 loss in their first game.
In the first inning, Covenant Christian got their offense started. They singled on a 1-0 count, scoring one run.
Covenant Christian then scored six runs in the fourth inning.
Red Raider Brodie Silas took the mound for Marion County. The pitcher allowed six hits and six runs over two innings, striking out two and walking one.

Winfield Pirates named Area 10 champs

Shown is the Winfield Pirates baseball team. From left, back row are Coach Nathan Dean, Coach Jake Elkins, Coach Derrick Rhoades, Brooks Smith, Will Beasley, Hunter Busha, Hollis McMillian, Jace Hollingsworth, Aiden Quinn, Tyler Mays, Coach Alex Rodreguiz, Coach Tanner Smothers, Coach Billy Stovall and Head Coach Allan Smith. From left, middle row, kneeling are Walt Hennicke, Kyson Key, Brady May, Spencer Haney, Miles Gann, J.D. Ray, Jarett Hosch, Blake Quinn and Rain Nolan. From left seated are Blane Bowen, Brayden McCaleb, Baron Smith, Davis Bowen, Layne Pollard, Hayden Ballard, Breck Mays, Brandon Whitley and Kruz Box.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
OAKMAN — The Winfield Pirates defeated the Oakman Wildcats 12-5 on their own turf on Thursday, April 7 to win the 3A Area 10 championship.
It was the Pirates’ second victory over the Wildcats after beating them at home 16-6 the previous Tuesday, April 5.
In their first game, Brady May was the Pirates’ top scorer with three runs and one RBI, hitting two out of three. Layne Pollard scored two runs off of two hits.

Aggies grab area title against Fayette County

Shown is the Hamilton Aggies baseball team after winning the Marion County Tournament in March this year. Top row, from left, are Coach Senn Williams, Head Coach Trent Williams, Caden Foltz, Payton Purser, Joseph Aycock, Bryant Loving, Jon Robert Page, J.T. Gilbert, Dalton Davis, Hunter Galbreath, Cannon Spiller, Brodie Moody, Coach Derrick Calvert and Coach Keller Smith. Bottom row from left, Mason Holloway, Tyson Hall, Ethan Ledbetter, Eli Jackson, Ben Moore, Will Shotts and Tanner Carter.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
The Hamilton Aggies were crowned the area champions after winning their game against Fayette on Tuesday, April 12.
The Aggies played three times last week against Fayette County, starting with their game on Tuesday and finishing with a double-header on Thursday, April 14.
The Aggies won by a big scoreline 13-0, in their first game that lasted only five innings after scoring a ton of runs in the top of the ninth.
Hamilton kicked off the scoring at the top of the first inning, scoring two runs.

Hamilton Lady Aggies take down Fayette Lady Tigers Tuesday

Ella Kelley winds up for a pitch against the Fayette Tigers.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — The Hamilton Lady Aggies got a massive win at home on Tuesday, April 12, against Fayette County.
The Lady Aggies won the game 13 runs to Fayette’s three in a game that saw Hamilton score nine runs in one inning, ending the game early.
Hamilton kicked off the scoring early in the game, scoring three runs in the bottom of the first inning after holding Fayette to a scoreless top of the first.

Lady Pirates win West Alabama Conference Tournament

Shown is the Winfield Pirates softball team after winning the West Alabama Conference Tournament. Top row left to right are Zac Wakefield, Ken Barnett, Makayla May, Lexi May, Milleigh Miles, Willa Simmons, Kennah Beth Lacy, Kylee Harbin, Kylah May, Kaylee Parr, Madie Grace Lewis, Braleigh Bolten, Alexa Box and William Box. Bottom row left to right are Hannah Kimbrell, Karrah Parr, Brantley Cagle, Brooklyn Boman, Gracie McCarty and Lizzie Muck.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
SULLIGENT — The Winfield Pirates’ softball team won the West Alabama Conference tournament on Saturday, April 16 with two wins against the Sulligent Blue Devils.
The Pirates started off their run in the tournament with a 8-4 victory over Lamar County on Friday night. The Pirates scored one point in the top of the second inning and three more in the top of the third, but the Bulldogs caught up and tied the game in the bottom of the third.

Aggies take down Fayette Tigers Thursday

Eli Jackson almost gets to first in time but is called out.

HAMILTON — The Hamilton High Aggies defeated the Fayette Tigers Thursday, April 14, winning with a score of 12-1. The first inning was slow with no scoring, but the Aggies ramped up in the second inning, earning seven runs.
Payton Purser was on the pitcher's mound for Hamilton. The pitcher surrendered zero runs on four hits over four innings, striking out two and walking zero.

Aggies take down Lions in double header

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — The Hamilton Aggies won their double header against the Haleyville Lions on Tuesday, March 31, in Hamilton.
Hamilton played their first of two games at 4:30 p.m. winning 8-1 after a tightly contested first two innings.
Hamilton’s Payton Purser hit a big  home run early in the game, and Hamilton didn’t let up after his contribution.
Aggies Joseph Aycock and Tanner Carter both had two hits from four at-bats during the game, while Mason Holloway had one hit from two at bats, scoring two runs.

Hackleburg wins over Phillips Tuesday

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
BEAR CREEK — The Hackleburg Panthers defeated the Phillips Bears in a huge win 15-1 on Tuesday, March 29, in Bear Creek.
Hackleburg started the scoring early on in the top of the first inning scoring five runs to Phillips’ one run.
Hackleburg didn’t score after that until the fourth inning, where they scored nine runs, before closing out the game early in the fifth inning, where they scored one run.

Junkin drives in four for victory over Pickens County

Brooks Junkin was an RBI machine on Friday, April 1, driving in four on one hits to lead the Marion County Red Raiders past Pickens County 19-5. Junkin drove in runs on a double in the third and a groundout in the third.
Marion County Red Raiders grabbed an early lead and scored on a home run by Brodie Silas, a walk by Caleb Knight and a walk by Preston Coniff in the first inning.
Marion County  tallied 11 runs in the third inning. Red Raiders batters contributing to the big inning included Knight, Sam Taylor, Cade Adkins, Junkin and Rilley Smith, who all drove in runs.

Winfield shuts out Carbon Hill Bulldogs 10-0

Davis Bowen had all the right stuff on Tuesday, March 29, for the Winfield Pirates, allowing zero runs and besting Carbon Hill by a score of 10-0.
Winfield scored four runs in the sixth inning. The offensive onslaught by the Pirates was led by Bowen and Walt Hennicke, who all drove in runs.
One bright spot for Carbon Hill was a single by Jesse Walker in the third inning.
Bowen pitched Winfield to victory. The righthander lasted six innings, allowing one hit and zero runs while striking out five and walking zero.

Area schools have victorious baseball games

The Marion County Red Raiders defeated Hubbertville 5-4 on Tuesday, March 22, thanks to a walk-off single. Marion County was down 4-3 in the bottom of the seventh inning when Preston Coniff singled on a 2-2 count, scoring two runs.
Marion County got things started in the first inning when Riley Smith's sac fly scored one run for the Red Raiders.
Hubbertville knotted the game up at two in the top of the fifth inning. An error scored one run for Hubbertville.

Panthers win over Bears Saturday

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HACKLEBURG — The Hackleburg Panthers defeated the Lynn Bears on Saturday, March 26, in Hackleburg with a 9-3 win.
The Panthers had a tough start to the game, struggling to get anything going against Lynn’s starting pitcher in the first two innings.
In the third inning, Hackleburg was finally able to get the bat to the ball, scoring five runs against Lynn and adding another run in the fourth inning.

Marion County athletes and coach recognized

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
MARION COUNTY — Several Marion County athletes are leading the state in basketball after the 2021-2022 season and will be recognized by the Alabama Sports Writers Association. Two county athletes are finalists for the prestigious Mr. and Miss Basketball awards.
Marion County’s girls team and Winfield’s boys team both had outstanding seasons and saw several athletes recognized at the state level.

Heavy rain collapses County Highway 48

By Chad Fell
Courtesy of Northwest Alabamian
HALEYVILLE — A portion of Marion County Highway 48 collapsed Tuesday night, March 22.
Dale Holt, Marion County commissioner for District 3, reported that an old metal culvert in place since 1952 underneath County Highway 48 which connects highways 129 and 241 in the eastern portion of Marion County had deteriorated, causing a portion of the westbound lane of 48 to collapse.  The collapsed section of road is approximately 18 feet wide and 30-35 feet deep.

Lamoureux drives in five as Red Raiders defeat Hubbertville

 HUBBERTVILLE — Five runs batted in from Zach Lamoureux helped lead the Marion County Red Raiders past Hubbertville 23-8 on Thursday, March 17. Lamoureux drove in runs on a fielder's choice in the fifth and a single in the seventh.
Hubbertville scored six runs in the first inning, but Marion County still managed to pull out the victory. The offensive onslaught by Hubbertville was led by C. Fisher, C. Hollingsworth, G. Alexander, D. Youngblood and J. Youngblood, all sending runners across the plate with RBIs in the inning.

Hamilton catches lead early to defeat Winfield

HAMILTON — The Winfield Pirates watched the game slip away early and couldn't recover in a 12-3 loss to Hamilton on Monday, March 14. Hamilton scored on a single by Will Shotts in the first inning, a single by Joseph Aycock in the second inning, a triple by Bryant Loving in the second inning and a single by Eli Jackson in the second inning.
Winfield struggled to put runs on the board and had a tough time defensively containing Hamilton, giving up 12 runs.

Brilliant Tigers lose lead in early defeat Thursday

LYNN — The Brilliant Tigers fell behind early and couldn't come back in a 21-0 loss to Lynn on Thursday, March 17. Lynn scored on a single by Blake Boyd, a single by David Uptain, a walk by Hunter Alexander, a single by John Paul Burkett, a double by Marcus Meeks and a single by Luke Alexander in the first inning.
Brilliant struggled to contain the high-powered offense of Lynn, giving up 21 runs.
Lynn opened up scoring in the first inning. Boyd drove in one when Boyd singled.

Guin, Hamilton win in youth basketball

Guin is named the 8-U champions. Front row from left are Hoyt Miles, Hunter Upton, Briggs Junkin, Griffin Pyron, Rostin Bellamy. Back row, Bryan Lipsey Jr., Rydar Bellamy, Rayln Bellamy and Chance Lipsey.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
The Hamilton Aggies 6-U basketball team are back-to-back undefeated champions after winning the Franklin County Tournament two weekends ago.
Hamilton went an incredible 18-0, making them undefeated for their second year running.
Guin was crowned the Northwest Alabama Basketball 8U champions after defeating South Lamar in their final game.

Marion County’s Lady Raiders move up to Final Four

Lady Raider Cara Sullivan stretches for the hoop.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
HANCEVILLE — The Marion County High School girls’ basketball team has advanced to the Final Four after defeating R.A. Hubbard and South Lamar in the 1A northwest regional tournament.
The Lady Raiders played the R.A. Hubbard Chiefs on Monday, Feb. 21, at Wallace State Community College in Hanceville.

Marion County and Winfield advance to Final Four

The Winfield Pirates advance from the “Elite Eight” to the “Final Four” during the 3A Northwest Regional Final in Hanceville. Standing from left are Aaron Rao, Head Coach Zac Wakefield, Assistant Coach Derek Trimm, Sean Wyers, Hudson Holland, Chris Podmore, Drew Cook, Haiden Channell, Logan Feltman, Tyler Mays, Seth Kemble, Kade Estill, Assistant Coach Zac Evans, Assistant Coach Jake Elkins and Assistant Coach Ty Seals. Kneeling from left are Dalton Chandler, Assistant Coach Brad Cunningham, Luke Overton, Dawson Klein, Ja’borri McGhee, Phoenix Sandlin, Thackory Box, Preston Nelson, Jarrett Hosch, Miles Miles, Will Beasley and Nick Haney.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
HANCEVILLE — The Winfield Pirates advanced to the Final Four after narrowly defeating the Lauderdale County Tigers 48-45 in the 3A Northwest Regional final on Monday, Feb. 21, at Wallace State Community College in Hanceville.

Hackleburg celebrates three victories last week

By Louis Mellini/
Game Changer
HACKLEBURG — The Hackleburg Panthers’ varsity baseball team won three last week against Brindlee Mountain, Tanner and Tharptown.
Brindlee Mountain:
The Hackleburg Panthers defeated Brindlee Mountain 11-1 Saturday, Feb. 19, thanks to a timely seven runs in a big second inning. Hackleburg batters contributing to the big inning included Jaquan Reeder, Carson Swinney, Joe Carter, Aydan Beard and Edge Weeks, who each had RBIs in the inning.

Pirates drop games to Haleyville and Dora

Haleyville:
The Winfield Pirates  stayed in it until the end, but Haleyville pulled away late in an 8-5 victory on Thursday, Feb. 24. The game was tied at four with Haleyville batting in the bottom of the sixth when Brody Gravitt drew a walk, scoring one run.
The Pirates lost despite out-hitting Haleyville eight to four.
Haleyville Lions captured the lead in the second inning when an error scored one run for Haleyville.
The Pirates evened things up at four in the top of the fifth inning. Brooks Smith grounded out, scoring one run.

All area teams and runners-up announced

The Class 1A Area 12 All-Tournament runner-up team are the Brilliant High School girls. From left on the back row are, Coach Alexis Tidwell, Tatum Barton, Kate Beasley, Indee Kois, Abby Humphries, Tennie Easterwood, Hadlee Sanderson, Head Coach Ryan Sanderson and Coach Heath Sanderson. Kneeling from left are Brianna O’Mary, Brooke O’Mary and Karagan Stanford.

All area teams and runners-up announced

The Class 1A Area 12 runner-up team are the Marion County High School Boys. Back row from left are Assistant Coach Tyler Markham, Dalyce Floyd, Riley Pyron, Kaison Bishop, Landon Morrow, Jameson Webb, Xander Morrow and Assistant Coach Kyle Williams. Front row from left are Reese Harris, Tye Madison, Dee Lipsey, Preston Conniff, Jake Smith, Zach Lamoureux and Head Coach Casey Fox.

All area teams and runners-up announced

Above, the Class 4A Area 12 runner-up team are the Hamilton High School boys. From left are Coach Trey Williams, Hunter Galbreath, Kelton Battle, Adam Frost, Jon Robert Page, J.T. Gilbert, Dawson Taylor, Joseph Aycock, Joshua Franks, Bryant Loving, Kevin McBride, Jackson Battle, Carter Humphries, Head Coach Ethan Lawler, Coach Keller Smith and Coach Jonathon Shaw.

Hamilton falls to West Morgan in soccer match

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
Hamilton — The Hamilton Aggies boys and girls varsity soccer teams took on the West Morgan Rebels on Friday, Feb. 18, at Hamilton High School.
The Aggies found it difficult to keep their defensive shape as the girls lost their match 0-10 and the boys lost 1-10.
Jack Wood was the sole goal scorer for the Aggies boys team.
Despite losing by a large margin in both matches, boys and girls coach Victoria Pendley had a positive outlook going forward in inproving the teams’ play.

Winfield Pirates break in Colts in regional semi-final game

Winfield’s Thackory Box eyes a pass while a Clements player does the same. The Pirates’ victory advanced them to the final round.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
HANCEVILLE — Severe weather wasn’t enough to stop the Pirates’ winning streak on Thursday night, Feb. 17, at Wallace State Community College in Hanceville.
The Pirates faced off against the Clements Colts in the 3A Northwest Regional semi-finals.
The Colts took the lead in the first quarter, leading the Pirates by five points, 17-12. But the Pirates turned up the heat in the second quarter, scoring 21 points while holding the Colts to eight.
At the half, the Pirates were leading 33-25.