Four teams competed June 2 at Walter Reed in a Washington Area Military Athletic Conference women’s softball tournament, including the Fort Lee Lady Travellers.
The Lady Travellers, fresh off a Memorial Day tourney championship win, opened with a close 9-8 win over Fort Meade.
The Fort Lee team trailed their opponents 5-8 until the final inning, when Tiffany Coggins led off with a base hit. Stacey Bouler and Debra White followed up with singles to load the bases, and Jenille Clay tripled to tie the game. Angie Gibson recorded a single to bring home the game-winning run.
“That was a good way to start the tournament,” said Lady Travellers coach Anthony Nelson. “Our team played together and never quit. When we were down, we might have been down on runs, but not in our determination to win. We kept motivated and got the hits we needed.”
The Lady Travellers would continue to crank out hits, defeating host team Walter Reed, 10-3, as White went 4-4 with three singles and a double. Gibson went 4-4, all singles, in the win. The team recorded 52 hits in the first two games, defining the team philosophy that consistent base hits are better than power hitting.
“I’ll take singles over home runs any day,” said Nelson. “I like it when our team puts together several hits to keep the bases loaded and the runners keep moving to home. It frustrates the opponents more than a bases-loaded home run, because that empties the bases and you have to start over. My philosophy is to keep the base runners moving, getting those hits to bring them home, and never letting up.”
The Lady Travellers’ third win over Senergy (from Fort Meade), 15-8, saw the team score 10 runs in the fourth inning. Coggins, Bouler, White and Clay all went 3-4 at the plate.
They had another high-scoring fourth inning against Walter Reed in the elimination round, recording 11 runs to win, 15-5. Coggins reached safely all four plate appearances, including a triple, while Rhonda Jackson and Traci Cogdill both went 3-3 in the win.
The Lady Travellers fell to Fort Meade in the championship game, 11-7, producing only one run in the first four innings, while Meade earned all their runs in the top four.
“Our team showed a lot of heart and a lot of class, playing in that heat, but we simply came up short in the end,” said Nelson.
The Fort Lee Lady Travellers will return to action, June 23, in a WAMAC tournament at Fort Belvoir.