According to information, the Cullman Bearcats' soccer team has been disqualified from the AHSAA soccer playoffs for reportedly violating the association's outside participation.
Principal Kim Hall reported the infraction, which comes three days after the Bearcats defeated Oxford 2-0 in the first round of the playoffs.
In understanding the rule of the AHSAA, an athlete can not participate in the same sport with another organization, such as club team, while that sport is still in season.
If so, the athlete is ruled ineligible, in which reportedly happened when Cullman met Oxford on April 27 at Oliver Woodard Stadium.
Cullman had to forfeit the game due to the violation, giving Oxford a 1-0 victory. The AHSAA has changed on its website in the current playoff format.
Oxford will now host Florence in the 2nd round of the playoffs Tuesday evening.
At Cullman High School:
Hanceville 0 0 0 0 0 - 0
Cullman 4 0 5 0 2 - 11
WP: Sydney Holder
LP: Raygen Turner
TIME OF GAME: 1:18
FLASH NOTES: Senior Kennedy Wren made her final plate appearance for the Lady Bearcats a memorable one as she crushed a two-run homer in the fifth inning.
That allowed Cullman to end the game with Hanceville via the run rule. Wren would have a two for four afternoon with the home run and two runs batted in.
Wren and senior teammates Gracie Cook and Hannah McPherson delivered timely hits to give Cullman a regular season sweep of Hanceville as the three were recognized for senior night following the game.
Besides the senior providing a spark, others contributed to the victory as well.
Catcher Alex Stansell enjoyed the afternoon of going two for three, belting a three-run homer in the first and a two-run double in the third. Stansell finished with a game high five runs batted in.
Faith Guest cracked a two-run double during the five-run third inning and was two for three in the contest.
Holder got her first shutout of the season, allowing Hanceville four hits on singles by Jadah Hurst in the first, Isabella Elliott and Destiny Short in the second and Cassidy Campbell in the third. Holder retired six consecutive batters between the third and fourth before it was broken in the fifth when Destiny Martin was safe on a fielding error.
But Martin was thrown out trying to steal when Stansell fired a strike to Guest covering second base to retire Martin.
Cullman concludes the regular season by hosting the Pre-State Blowout Friday and Saturday at Heritage Park and the Field of Miracles. Thirty three teams are planning to participate with the schedule to be announced later.
Photo 1: Cullman's Gracie Cook scores in the 1st inning on single by Savanna Davis.
Photo 2: Cullman's Hannah McPherson looks at a pitch in the 2nd inning.
Photo 3: Cullman's Kennedy Wren checks up on a pitch from Cassidy Campbell.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton
Cullman High School Track Classic
At Oliver Woodard Stadium:
VARSITY TOP 10:
1. Cullman 104.50, 2. Hartselle 97, 3. Helena 82, 4. James Clemens 68, 5. Winfield 63, 6. Falkville 55.50, 7. Arab 44, 8. Jasper 37, 9. Point 35, 10. Deshler 32.
VARSITY GIRLS TOP 10:
1. James Clemens 222, 2. Helena 66, 3. Arab 65, 4. Cullman 59. 5. Jasper 46, 6. Winfield 42, 7. Addison 34, 8. Muscle Shoals 30, 9. J.B. Pennington 28, 10. Falkville 24.
Leahrose Mami - St. Bernard 2nd in Girls 1,600 (5:31.55)
Leahrose Mami - St. Bernard 1st in Girls 3,200 (12:12.71)
Anna Faulk - St. Bernard 2nd in Girls Pole Vault (8-06.00)
Bijou Phillips - Good Hope 2nd in Girls 1,600 (4A/7A) (5:33.66)
Sadie Junkins - West Point 3rd in Girls 100 hurdles (4A/7A) 17.55
Sadie Junkins - West Point 3rd in Girls 300 hurdles (4A/7A) 51.92
Cullman 4 X 400 Girls Relay (Daily, Kress, Pittman, Sanchez) 3rd (4A/7A) 4:33.20
Cullman 4 X 800 Girls Relay (Aviles, Hudson, Tizapa, Kelly) 2nd (4A/7A) 10:37.89
Caroline Hollingswortgh - Cullman 2nd in Girls High Jump (4A/7A) 5-02.00
Anna Franklin - Cullman 2nd in Girls Pole Vault (4A/7A) 9-06.00
Ragan Canter - Cullman 3rd in Girls Discus (4A/7A) 105-01
Haley Franklin - Cullman 3rd in Girls Javelin (4A/7A) 97-04
Andrew Sweeney - St. Bernard 1st in 1,600 (4:37.64)
Andrew Sweeney - St. Bernard 1st in 3,200 (10:16.28)
Cole Akridge - Cold Springs 2nd in 3,200 (11:42.45)
Zachary Reynolds - Holly Pond 3rd in 3,200 (12:04.97)
Elijah Price - St. Bernard 2nd in High Jump (6-00.00)
Hunter Appling - West Point 2nd in 100 (4A/7A) (11.34)
Edgar Medina - Cullman 2nd in 800 (4A/7A) (2:05.21)
Jackson Tucker - Cullman 2nd in 1,600 (4A/7A) (4:35.43)
Eli Wilhite - Cullman 3rd in 1,600 (4A/7A) (4:36.17)
Eli Wilhite - Cullman 1st in 3,200 (4A/7A) (10:12.51)
Tucker Adkison - Cullman 2nd in 3,200 (4A/7A) (10:31.52)
Hunter Appling - West Point 1st in 100 hurdles (4A/7A) (14.26)
Will Kress - Cullman 2nd in 100 hurdles (4A/7A) (14.87)
Hunter Appling - West Point 1st in 300 hurdles (4A/7A) (38.54)
Will Kress - Cullman 2nd in 300 hurdles (4A/7A) (40.90)
Cullman 1st in 4 X 400 Relay (Hutson, Kress, Medina, Bumgartner) (3:34.89)
Tommy Fetters - Good Hope 3rd in Pole Vault (4A/7A) (12-00.00)
Isiah Jones - Cullman 3rd in Long Jump (4A/7A) (20-03)
Will Reid - Cullman 1st in Discus (4A/7A) (135-02)
FLASH NOTES: Host Cullman got 30 points on three first place finishes and collected 40 points on five runner-up berths that carried them to the top in the varsity division, edging out rival Hartselle by less than seven points.
Wilhite and Kress gained 16 points apiece for their individual performances, with Medina scoring eight in an individual event and sharing a top spot in team performance in the 4 X 400 relay.
West Point's Hunter Appling had a successful day, four days he won MVP honors in the Cullman County meet by dominating the hurdle races and finishing second in the 100 meter run.
St. Bernard's talented duo of Leahrose Mami and Andrew Sweeney showed their consistency in the 1,600 and 3,200. Sweeney ran home with the title in both events as Mami finished second in the 1,600 then came back later in the day to conquer the 3,200.
Co-county MVP Sadie Junkins from West Point earned third place in both hurdles, collecting 12 points to make an impact for her school once again.
Thirty schools were involved in the event that took place under sunny conditions with the temperature hitting the low 70s by the time the event concluded in the late afternoon.
This was the final regular season event before the sectionals started next weekend at various locations per classification.
Photo 1: Cullman coach Trent Dean talks with 4 X 800 relay team prior to their event.
Photo 2: Andrew Sweeney of St. Bernard in the lead during the 1,600 meter run.
Photo 3: Leahrose Mami of St. Bernard prior to start of 1,600 meter run.
Photo 4: West Point's Joshua Couch competes in the 100-meter hurdles.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton
AHSAA 6A, Area 14 Girls Soccer
At Cullman High Complex:
Albertville 0 3 - 3 (8-7, 1-1)
Cullman 4 1 - 5 (9-6-3, 3-0)
Cullman goal at 36:13 in 1st (Own goal)
Cullman goal at 31:59 in 1st (Abigail Branham)
Cullman goal at 24:22 in 1st (Branham)
Cullman goal at 11:34 in 1st (Branham)
Albertville goal at 23:20 in 2nd
Albertville goal at 18:42 in 2nd
Albertville goal at 10:22 in 2nd
Cullman goal at 5:43 in 2nd (Branham)
SHOTS ON GOAL: Albertville 31, Cullman 15
FLASH NOTES: With first place at stake in a showdown between 6A, Area 14 rivals Cullman and Albertville Thursday afternoon, a great first half was accomplished by the Lady Bearcats with a 4-goal lead, thanks to a hat trick by Branham and great play at the net from goalie Gracie Barksdale.
Barksdale fought off 11 shots by Albertville in the opening half, including a penalty kick at the 19:44 mark after a yellow card was issued against Cullman coach Jacob Brown.
But the momentum shifted to the visitors from Marshall County in the second half as they continued to attack well into Cullman's zone and limit the Lady Bearcats to four shots on goal through halfway of the final 40 minutes.
"We came out strong. We were prepared for this game," Brown said. "Then we feel asleep for the final 15 minutes of the first half and that carried over into the second half. We seemed to have a false sense of security with the lead. We faltered until we got that insurance goal to give us a two-goal lead late in the game."
Albertville attempted 20 shots on goal vs. Barksdale in the second half and scored three times in a span of 13:00 to close the margin to 4-3.
Poise returned to the side of the Lady Bearcats as Barksdale stopped five shot opportunities in the remaining 10 minutes.
Stepping up in helping Barksdale defensively were Ninfa Rodriguez, Abgail Lawson, Mary Lunsford, Jorryn Barnette, Addie Echols, Jade Sanford and Anna Hulsey.
The clincher was a rebound off a shot by Branham that went into the net in a crowd of Albertville defenders with 5:43 remaining, giving Cullman a two-goal edge in which they were able to maintain in crunch time.
Cullman takes the lead in 6A, Area 14 vs. Albertville. Both came into the encounter ranked in the Top 10 of 6A Soccer with Cullman 9th and Albertville 10th.
The Lady Bearcats will make a return trip to Albertville next Thursday (April 12) trying to clinch the area regular season title and get a home match for the first round of the AHSAA playoffs on the weekend of April 27.
Photo 1: Cullman's Mary Lunsford (14) advances the ball downfield vs. Albertville.
Photo 2: Cullman Lady Bearcats huddle prior to match time with Albertville Thursday.
Photo 3: Jorryn Barnette (15) of Cullman battles an Albertville player for the ball with Addie Echols (18) trailing on the play.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton
Two seniors from Cullman High School have stepped into the spotlight this week in regards of their future.
Dylan Finch announced Tuesday he has committed to play basketball at Wallace State Community College.
Tyler Nunnelley has been selected to participate in the AHSAA All-Star football game in July in Montgomery.
Finch was a driving force to the success for the Bearcats on the hardwood, finishing second in 6A, Area 14 and reaching the sub-regional playoffs.
Finch was All-Area, a member of the Bracy Invitational All-Tournament team, on the Sportspage All-Performance team (2nd team center).
Finch is the second local player to commit to Wallace State in recent weeks. He joins Holly Pond's Griffin Morris who was named Sportspage player of the year in March.
Nunnelley was an outstanding lineman for the Bearcats as they posted a 7-3 regular season in 2017, finished 3rd in 6A, Region 7 and made the playoffs for the third time while Nunnelley was on the varsity.
Nunnelley has committed to play at Eastern Kentucky University.
The North All-Stars will be led by Locust Fork coach Chris Musso. Nunnelley is listed at 6'2", 290 pounds.
Team North has won the last three classic, defeating the South 14-13 last season at the Cramton Bowl in Montgomery.
Photo 1: Dylan Finch (Courtesy of Cullman High School)
Photo 2: Tyler Nunnelley (Courtesy of Johnny Thornton)
At Good Hope High School:
Cullman 3 0 4 8 0 - 15 (4-18)
Good Hope 0 0 0 2 0 - 2 (3-7)
WP: Sydney Holder
LP: Skylar Tucker
TIME OF GAME: 1:23
FLASH NOTES: For the first time on the season, the Cullman Lady Bearcats have recorded back to back victories.
After romping over Brewer Monday 11-1 in a 6A, Area 14 assignment, the Lady 'Cats visited Good Hope and had another fine performance at the plate.
Five batters had multiple hits with the huge blow coming from OF Kennedy Wren in the third inning as Cullman led 3-0.
She cleared the bases with a grand slam, well over the fence in left-center that enabled the visitors to get control of the game, moving the margin to 7-0.
In the fourth inning, coach Meghan Cagle's Lady Bearcats hammered out eight runs on a series of hits and ended the game one inning later via the run rule.
Gracie Cook and Faith Guest delivered two doubles and drove in two runs apiece, Brandy Peoples had a single and an RBI, Ragan Quattlebaum singled, Keslin Grimmett collected a single, triple and four runs batted in, Ashlin Heatherly cracked two singles and had an RBI, Wren singled to go with her grand slam, her first in her varsity career.
Alex Stansell, a former Good Hope catcher, singled home a run in the fourth. She was robbed of a home run when the left fielder made the catch to end in the fourth in front of the fence, 200 feet from home plate.
Holder allowed three hits, struck out eight and kept Good Hope off the scoreboard until the fourth when Woodall doubled and Bailey Swann, a former Cullman catcher, belted a two-run homer.
Tucker had the other hit against Holder, a single.
In its last three victories, Cullman is averaging 11 runs and double digit figures in hits.
Up next for Cullman: At Fort Payne (6A, A 14) Thursday 4:30
Up next for Good Hope: At Jasper Thursday 4:30
Photo 1: Cullman's Brandy Peoples tees off on a pitch from Good Hope's Skylar Tucker.
Photo 2: Good Hope's Skylar Tucker delivers to Cullman batter Faith Guest.
Photo 3: Good Hope infield takes a time out after falling behind 3-0 to Cullman in the 1st.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton