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BHS girls win South 5A

The Brookhaven Lady Panthers saved their best game for last inthe South State 5A slowpitch softball finals, continuing theirlate-season run. Ole Brook evoked the 10-run rule in the fifth toshut out the Vancleave Lady Bulldogs 10-0 Tuesday night at the LadyPanther Softball Complex.

With the win by the Lady Panthers, they captured this 3-gameseries, 2 games to 1, and claimed the 2009 South State 5Achampionship. Head Coach Lisa Covington’s young ballclub improvedto 15-17 after starting the season 0-11.

Brookhaven defeated Vancleave 4-2 in the opener and dropped themiddle game 5-4.

Vancleave, coached by Amanda Buck, concludes its season at13-11.

Brookhaven plays for the Class 5A title Saturday morning at theVA Fields in Jackson. Game time for this best-of-3 series will beannounced 11 a.m. The Lady Panthers await the North 5A winner.Teams still in semifinals play are New Hope versus Ridgeland andNeshoba Central, which eliminated Pearl in 3 games yesterday.

Brookhaven 4, Vancleave 2

“This was a total team effort tonight,” said Covington.

Vancleave jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning,aided by a pair of Brookhaven errors.

Brookhaven responded with an Emily Freeman run in the bottom ofthe inning. Freeman singled and later scored on a Christen Bensonbase hit.

The Lady Panthers plated 3 runs in the third. Stevie Wrightsingled. Freeman reached on an error. Madeline DeLaughter walked toload the bases. Benson’s sacrifice fly scored Wright. EricaBridwell’s base hit plated Freeman and DeLaughter.

Benson singled twice and had 2 RBIs.

Emily Dawson led Vancleave with 2 singles.

Vancleave 5, Brookhaven 4

The Lady Bulldogs were the designated home team for Game 2.

Vancleave got the game-winner with 1 out in the seventh and thegame tied at 4-all. Taylor Zirlott and Emily Dawson hit consecutivebase hits. Courtney Moore grounded into a fielder’s choice; movingZirlott to third. Hannah Dawson’s single scored Zirlott.

Emily Dawson led the Lady Bulldogs with 4 singles.

Brookhaven got 2 doubles from Wright. DeLaughter and RashanaStewart had 2 singles apiece. Desiree Benson tripled andsingled.

Brookhaven 10, Vancleave 0

“This was by far the best inning we played all year,” CoachCovington said following a post-game, ice water shower from herplayers. “These girls did not give up after losing Game 2.”

Ole Brook (15-17) sent 11 batters to the plate in the firstinning. Hosick, Wright, Freeman, DeLaughter, Christen Benson,Bridwell and Stewart crossed home plate, aided by 5 base hits and 2Vancleave errors.

Hosick, Wright and DeLaughter scored in the fourth and shut downthe Lady Bulldogs in the top of the fifth, 1-2-3 to win theseries.

“This is a great opportunity for us, considering this is thefirst time that we are playing for state,” said senior leftcenterfielder Stevie Wright. Wright singled and doubled to lendsupport for Brookhaven.

“It is a blessing to be going to the state championship, beingthat this is my first and last year playing,” senior rightfielderDesiree Benson.

Christen Benson singled twice, doubled and had 3 RBIs in theclincher. Bridwell had a base hit and 2 RBIs.

Brookhaven’s Brooke Hosick (2-1) and Vancleave’s Cortney Holland(1-2) were the pitchers of record.

Vancleave got a pair of base hits from Courtney Moore.