14U All-Stars off to hot start

Published 5:43 pm Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Washington 14U All-Stars got off to a terrific start at the Babe Ruth Southeast Regional tournament held in Varina, Va. on Thursday as the team rallied to win its first game 7-5 in nine innings, then went on to top the Virginia state champs 8-3 to head into Day 2 of the double-elimination tourney with a perfect 2-0 record.
The team wasted no time getting into the dramatics as the All-Stars trailed Madison 5-1 heading into the top of the seventh. Washington slowly created momentum as an Allison Brantley RBI cut the lead to 5-2. Washington proceeded to load the bases, but then recorded two outs to heighten the drama. That set the state for slugger Adrianna Tyson, who belted a bases clearing triple to knot the game at 5-5.
Washington would clinch the tourney-opening victory as Kendall Alligood smashed a two-run, game-winning single.
Pitcher Haley Hutchins, who came on in relief in the eighth inning, threw two scoreless innings to get the win, while starting pitcher Kelsey Lang delivered seven strong innings for the All-Stars.
Hutchings would go on to lead the All-Stars to their second victory of the day as she threw one-hitter in the team’s 8-3 victory over Virginia.
Overall, the day provided plenty of excitement for the All-Stars.
“It’s a highly charged atmosphere, we had a stunning come from behind victory in the first game and then we had a dominant pitching performance from Haley Hutchins in the second game,” said Washington Girls Fastpitch Softball League president Greg Dority via telephone from Varina.
Aside from a great pitching performance, the All-Stars got some all-star hitting against Virginia as Lang went 3-3 with a double and an RBI, Brantley went 1-2 with an RBI, Catie Dority knocked two hits and drove in a run, Tyson went 1-2 with an RBI, Haley Wright delivered two hits and Alex Adams was 1-3.
“Everybody contributed. Haley Wright made a tremendous play in the second game … Allison Brantley came up big driving in runs early in both games … It was a complete team effort. Everybody contributed,” Dority said.
Dority also felt that the team’s exciting early when helped provide a spark for the second game.
“Without a doubt it helped us,” Dority said. “The temperature is close to 100 with a heat index of about 105; it gave our team a jolt. Haley Hutchins had already pitched two innings and was in good form and she completely dominated the Virginia state champs.”
The All-Stars will swing back into action today with another two-game slate as it will first take a team from Ocala, Fl., before it faces a familiar foe in Downeast, whom Washington beat 6-2 in bracket play in the ENC Babe Ruth state tournament.