(LaGRANGE, GA) - East second-seed Averett captured the program's second USA South Softball Tournament championship, the first since 2004, with an 8-7, extra-inning victory over East third-seed Ferrum on Saturday, April 15 at Shuford Softball Complex in LaGrange, Georgia as a part of the 2017 USA South Spring Sports Festival.
Ferrum took an early 3-0 lead through four innings before Averett's bats heated up. The Cougars tied the game in the top of the fifth inning thanks to a sacrifice fly from Andrea Grant and two unearned runs resulting from an errant throw. The Panthers, however, answered right back with four runs of their own in the bottom-half of the inning. Karlee Pendleton and Courtney Rudd each notched two RBI to push the score to 7-3 after five innings. Averett began the comeback with two runs in the sixth inning and two more in the seventh to tie the game and force an extra inning. In the eighth inning, Essence Pulliam singled and eventually scored what proved to be the winning run on a wild pitch.
Kaitlyn Aherron earned the win in the circle by tossing the final 6.2 innings and allowing four runs, only two of which were earned, on eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts. She was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player thanks to a 6-0 record, including a 4-0 mark during the double-elimination portion of the tournament.
C - Breanna Murphy, Averett
1B - Amber Coffin, Ferrum
2B - Maddie Ols, Ferrum
3B - Andrea Grant, Averett
SS - Jessica Long, Averett
OF - Ashton Hayden, Maryville
OF - Tiffanie Moore, Ferrum
OF - Essence Pulliam, Averett
UT - Amanda Wright, Averett
P - Courtney Rudd, Ferrum
P - Kaitlyn Aherron, Averett (MVP)
|Softball Tournament Website|
|Softball Tournament Bracket|
|Spring Sports Festival Website|
|2017 USA South Softball Tournament Schedule|
First Round - Best-of-Three Series* - All games played at the higher divisional seed
Double-Elimination Six-Team Tournament - All games played in LaGrange, Georgia
Friday, April 14