October 22, 2017

Lady Braves earn runner-up trophy in Region 5-AA

Region 5-AA Runner-Up Lady Braves (Front L-R): Hannah Holden, Brittany Scarborough, Alexus Crawford, Brittany Graley, Alyssa Hall, Dara O’Neal, Tori Caldwell, “Money” Garza (Back L-R): Coach Gavin Porter, Coach Ryan Duffey, Coach Trent Bianco, Haley Bennett, Marissa Garza, Katelyn Jiles, Taylor Paris, Anna Cosper, Sydney Gay, Kaitlyn Baldwin, Emily Shelnutt, Coach Laura Marshall, Lora Glover, Coach Matt Hornsby

(Barnesville, GA) — The Heard County High School softball team fell to the Lamar County Trojans 12-4 in the Region 5-AA Championship game Saturday at Lamar County High School.

The Lady Braves led the game 3-1 and were aiming to become the first team in Heard County sports history to claim four consecutive region crowns before the Lady Trojans stormed back with a combined nine runs in the third and fourth innings.

Left fielder Marissa Garza continued her hot hitting driving home three on two doubles and a single to lead the Lady Brave offense.

Lora Glover drove home the other Lady Brave run in the fifth after hits from Garza and senior Brittany Scarborough. Kaitlyn Baldwin, Hannah Holden, and Katelyn Giles also had hits in the game.

Junior Haley Bennett started in the circle before being relieved by Jiles in the fourth. Bennett would later return to the hill. A Trojan walk-off run rule hit ended the game in the bottom of the sixth inning.

“The bottom line is Haley didn’t have her best stuff today but she battled hard and they hit some balls hard and we just didn’t do ourselves any favors on defense,” said head coach Matt Hornsby after the game. “We always talk about doing the little things and we struggled with those things today. I thought we weren’t bad offensively but once they got the momentum they were hard to stop because they are just so dang good and talented.”

The Lady Braves advanced to the title game following a 7-2 semifinal win over Callaway in a game that was moved up to Friday due to weather concerns from Hurricane Nate. The Trojans had knocked off Temple 16-2 on Friday to land in the title game.

Callaway defeated Temple 12-0 Saturday to claim third place in the region. All four teams will now move on to the GHSA Class AA State Playoffs this Wednesday as each battles a team from Region 6-AA.

The Lady Braves (12-14, 7-1) will host the Therrell Panthers (5-5,4-4) from Southwest Atlanta in round one with the winner likely to travel to Rockmart in round two to face the No. 1 ranked team in the state.

Rockmart is 27-2 on the season with the only two losses coming to Calhoun and Northwest Whitifeld. Rockmart hosts Elbert County in round one. The Lady Braves lost 12-3 at Rockmart on September 20.

Lamar County will host Washington in round one while Callaway will travel to Douglass and Temple goes to South Atlanta.

The Region 5-AA teams have the potential to sweep round one versus a weak Region 6-AA.

The Lady Braves host the Panthers in a doubleheader Wednesday (1:00 PM) with an “if” game scheduled for Thursday at HHS.

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