District 3-A teams finish strong
By By Rocky Higginbotham/The Meridian Star
May 21, 2001
MACON Teams from District 3-A have long had a big voice in Mississippi Private School Association softball, as Central Academy's Class A title Saturday was the Lady Vikings' sixth in the last seven years.
But this season, Central's district rivals made quite a bit of noise, as well.
Four teams from District 3-A made the state tourney, and three of them were still around when the lights came on Saturday night at Mike Thomas Field.
In addition to Central's title, Kemper Academy finished third for the seventh time in the last decade. Sylva-Bay Academy's cinderella season came to an end with a fourth-place finish, while Heidelberg Academy finished tied for fifth.
Here's a recap of Saturday's contests involving Kemper, Sylva-Bay and Heidelberg:
Kemper 19, Claiborne (La.) Academy 1: The Lady Rams erupted for 14 runs in the fourth inning and coasted past Claiborne.
Kayla Mosley, who finished the day 11-for-15 at the plate, was 4-for-4 and scored three runs to lead Kemper.
Jennifer Knox was 2-for-3 with three runs scored and Eve Darnell, Jessica Warren, Amanda Hall and Jodi Darnell all had two hits.
Heidelberg Academy 8, Huntington (La.) School 3: The Lady Rebels' only win of the day came over South State champ and eventual state runnerup Huntington.
Danielle Martin and Leslie Higdon each had a triple and a single to lead Heidelberg, which jumped out to a 6-0 lead after two innings.
Courtney Harrington and Emily Thornton both added two hits and two runs scored.
Amite School 17, Sylva-Bay 2: The Lady Saints were pelted with 18 hits off the bats of Amite as they dropped their tourney opener.
Amite blew the game open with seven runs in the second inning.
Brandi Bayless was 3-for-3 to account for half of SBA's six hits.
Sylva-Bay 10, Plain Dealing 1: Once in the losers' bracket, the Lady Saints made sure they wouldn't have a short stay with a convincing win over Plain Dealing.
Ashley Green homered and finished 4-for-4 with four runs scored to lead the Lady Saints, while seventh-grader Katie Jo Windham had three hits.
Marie Wite and Brandi Bayless had two hits each and Cassie Wite had two hits and two runs scored.
Kemper 3, Heidelberg 1: The Lady Rams broke a scoreless tie with two runs in the fourth inning and stayed unbeaten on the day with a tight win over Heidelberg.
KA had 12 hits compared to just three for Heidelberg, but the Lady Rams stranded 10 runners.
Megan Whitaker was 2-for-2 and Mosley also had two hits for Kemper, while Jodi Darnell produced two runs with a pair of hits. Stephanie Sinclair was 2-for-3 for HA.
Sylva-Bay 7, Heidelberg 1: The Lady Saints sent their cross-county rivals home for the season with a second straight win that staved off elimination.
Sylva-Bay scored twice each in the first and second innings and made the six-run lead stand up.
Ingrid Norvell had two hits and two runs scored, while Green and Mitzi Bayless both had two hits as well for SBA.
Heidelberg finished its season 27-10.
Huntington 6, Sylva-Bay 3: The cinderella run ended for the Lady Saints, who finished fourth in the state despite a 14-16 overall record.
Huntington scored three times in the top of the fourth to take the lead for good, then held on for a tight win when Brandi Bayless' hard liner was snared to end the game with the bases loaded.
Bayless finished with a triple and a single, Cassie Wite was 2-for-3 with two runs and Marie Wite was 2-for-3 with an RBI to lead Sylva-Bay.
Huntington 12, Kemper 7: After falling 3-0 in the winners' bracket final to Central, Kemper let a four-run lead get away as the Lady Rams were eliminated by Huntington.
The Lady Rams used a couple of unearned runs in the second to get on the board, then went up 5-1 in the third when Jennifer Knox smashed a two-run homer well beyond the center-field fence.
KA was still up 6-4 heading into the bottom of the fourth, where Huntington used seven base hits and four errors for an eight-run rally that shifted the momentum.
Kemper finished its season 18-12 despite a 4-for-4 performance from Mosley that included a triple and an RBI. Amanda Hall had two hits and Knox finished with two hits and two runs scored.
Rocky Higginbotham is the sports editor of The Meridian Star. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.