By PATRICK CASEY
The South Walton Seahawks scored six runs in the top of the seventh inning to put away the Walton Braves for a 12-1 victory in the championship game of the Walton County Softball Tournament.
Seahawks freshman pitcher Meagan Ellison picked up the win as she limited the Braves to three hits and one earned run while striking out seven batters.
The Seahawks took a 4-0 lead in the first inning as five singles and some fielding errors by Walton allowed South Walton breathing room early. Walton cut the lead to 5-1 in the bottom of the third inning as Treasa Herndon singled in Shelbie Standland for the only run the Braves would score in the contest.
South Walton blew the game open in their last at-bat of the night as nine consecutive hitters reached base before the Braves threw out a Seahawks runner at home plate for the first out of the inning. South Walton totaled 14 hits in the contest with Caitlin Holliday pounding out four hits with Megan MacLeod providing three singles and two RBIs.
South Walton got to the championship game after defeating Freeport 10-0 in the second win in three meetings for the Seahawks.
South Walton plated two runs in the bottom of the first inning with the help of a Megan MacLeod double, followed by a Meagan Ellison single and an error.
The Seahawks blew the game open with five runs in the third inning as Caitlin Holliday doubled with Courtney Wright and Mackenzie Watson following up with singles. Two walks and a hit batter gave Lacy Littlefield the chance to drive in two runs with a single for a 7-0 lead.
The Seahawks ended the contest with three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning as catcher Mackenzie Watson singled in two runs after Sam Snider doubled and two singles and a walk had loaded the bases.
Freeport struggled with four errors on the night and could manage only four hits in the contest. Rani Simmons took the loss as South Walton tallied 11 hits and ran the bases aggressively to cause problems for the Freeport defense.
Walton took out Paxton 14-7 to advance to the championship game as the Braves scored six insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to pull away from an 8-7 contest. The Braves sent 11 batters to the plate in their final at-bat of the night, doing all the damage with two outs in the inning. Walton got singles from Treasa Herndon, Kaylyn Douglass, Kaitlyn Green, Shelbie Standland and Camille Cosson along with two crucial Paxton errors to pull away for the win.
Walton had a 2-1 lead when Paxton plated two runs in the top of the third inning to gain a 3-2 advantage as Jessie Oglesby provided a key hit around a walk and a Braves error for their only lead of the night.
Walton responded in the bottom of the third with three runs as Camille Cosson tripled in two runners, then scored on Herndon’s single to hand the host a 4-2 lead.
Walton added two more runs in the fourth inning as Cosson doubled in a pair of teammates to push the lead to 6-2.
Paxton got one run back in the top of the fifth inning as a pair of walks and an error plated one run before the Braves threw out a Paxton base-runner at the plate to end the inning. Walton added two more runs in the fifth for an 8-3 lead as a three-base throwing error and a single by Gillian Infinger seemed to salt the game away.
Paxton wasn’t done, however, as they sent nine batters to the plate in the top of the sixth inning with Chelsea Kemp driving in two runs with a double down the first base line to cut the lead to 8-7 before Cosson was able to coax a pop-out from Bethany Neale to strand the tying and go-ahead runners on base.
After surviving the Paxton comeback, Walton put the game away with a six-run inning in the bottom of the sixth. Cosson then retired the Bobcats in the top of the seventh for the grueling win to sweep the three-game season series.
Freeport defeated Paxton in the third place game 15-7 as the Bulldogs tallied 16 hits and took advantage of numerous fielding errors by the Bobcats to earn the team’s fourth win of the year….
Read the full story in the April 21, 2011 edition of the Herald Breeze.