Posted: Wednesday, October 3rd 2012 at 11:59pm
Softball: Buford gets revenge in 7-AAA tourney
By Jeff Hart Staff
RABBITTOWN – Buford got its measure of revenge against Dawson County Wednesday in the semifinals of the Region 7-AAA softball tournament.
The Lady Wolves avenged their only region loss last week to Dawson County by knocking off the top-seeded Lady Tigers 4-1at East Hall Park to advance to the region finals.
The Lady Wolves will play the Dawson County-Fannin County winner at 6 p.m. Thursday in Buford in the championship round. Buford needs just one win to claim the title while Dawson County and Fannin County will need to beat the Lady Wolves twice to win the region title.
“I would rather be at home but we know Dawson is capable of coming to our place and beating us so we’ll have to be ready,” Buford coach Tony Wolfe said.
Bria Bush led the way for Buford tossing a complete-game, three-hitter with 10 strike outs to also avenge last week’s loss. She was roughed up for five runs in the first meeting. At one point she retired 11 of 12 Dawson County batters. The only blemish was a home run to Carly Gilreath to lead-off the sixth inning and then she fanned the final six Dawson hitters.
“I think Bria felt she had something to prove after last week,” Wolfe said about his sophomore pitcher. “She didn’t have her best stuff in the first game and wasn’t happy with her performance. She really stepped it up (tonight).”
Bush and Dawson County hurler Martie Rogers both dominated the opposing offenses through the first three innings allowing just one hit apiece. But Buford finally broke through in the fourth.
Baylee Sexton reached on an error to lead off and that opened the door for the Lady Wolves. Remington Hasty singled to put runners at the corners and then Tessa Daniels drove in Sexton with a one-out single. After Rebekah Rude flied out to left, Drew Puckett blasted a two-out, two-strike, three-run home run to right-center for a 4-0 lead. It was Puckett’s first varsity home run.
That was more than enough for Bush.
“(Rogers) was outstanding and really just one pitch from a tie game,” Wolfe said. “We didn’t pound the ball but we were able to put one inning together. Drew has really had an excellent season and she came through when we needed it.”
Rogers also went the distance for Dawson County and fanned eight while allowing just five hits. All four runs were unearned.
Fannin County and Banks County joined Buford and Dawson County as the four teams moving on to the state tournament.
Fannin County advanced with an 8-0 whitewash of East Hall while Banks County rallied to beat White County 5-4 in elimination games. Fannin then knocked off Banks 8-5 to stay alive while Banks will be the fourth seed.
Dawson County and Fannin County will play Thursday at 4 p.m. at Buford with the winner advancing to the championship round. The loser will be the No. 3 seed from Region 7-AAA.
The Lady Rebels stayed alive against Banks County behind its offense. Fannin took a 2-0 lead but then fell behind 4-2 after the Lady Leopards used a four-run third to grab the lead.
Missy Dixon, Candace German, and Amy Mintz each had two hits to pace the Fannin offense. Jace Armstrong earned the win yielding six hits and fanning three for the Lady Rebels.
Banks County was led by Savannah Denton, who tossed a complete-game five-hitter for the Lady Leopards. Denton struck out two.
Banks County led 2-0 after the first inning but White County tied the game with two runs in the second and took a 4-2 lead in the fourth. But Haley Warner and Morgan Cox pushed the Lady Leopards into the playoffs.
Warner drilled a two-run double in the bottom of the fifth and then scored on a RBI ground out by Cox to give Banks County a 5-4 lead.
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