The second round of the GCAA Playoffs featured a matchup between the Georgia Highlands Chargers and the Georgia Military College Bulldogs. The matchup consisted of a best two out of three series to decide who would move on to round three and the Championship series of the GCAA tournament.
Game one the Chargers collected three runs and six hits, but it was not enough to overcome the Bulldogs nine runs and 11 hits. Hailey Cronic led the offensive effort with a single and two RBIs. Kyndal Brown was 2-3 at the plate with two singles. Halie Walther, Madison Bennett, and Natalia Herrera also collected a single a-piece in game one.
Montana Ledbetter started in the circle throwing five innings. Ledbetter allowed seven hits, six earned runs, and struck out 10 of the Bulldog’s batters. Maggie Schandera threw an inning and allowed four hits, and three earned runs. Chargers drop game one of the series with a score of 3-9.
Game two featured a lot of pop from the Georgia Highland’s offense as they scored 10 runs on eight hits. This was enough to enforce the run rule in the six innings as Highlands tops GMC 10-2 in game two.
Madison Bennett was a star at the plate hitting 3-4 and collecting two RBIs. Lacey Rutledge smacked a two-run homer. Hailey Cronic had a hit that collected two RBIs, and Allison Daffron had a walk off double to score the run to enforce the run rule. Halie Walther and Natalia Herrera also collected singles in game two.
Madalyn Morton collected the win in the circle throwing all six innings. Morton allowed four hits, two earned runs, and struck out one of the Bulldog’s offense.
Due to the split of the first two games, game three was deemed necessary to decide who would move on to the GCAA Championship series. After the rain finally cleared and the field tarp was removed it was time to play to decide who would move on.
Game three proved to be a pitcher’s duel through three innings as neither side scored until the bottom of the fourth inning. Military scored one in the bottom of the fourth, four in the bottom of the fifth, and two more the bottom of the sixth. Highland’s offense hit a ton of hard shots, but did not produce runs to close the gap. GMC took game three with a score of 0-7.
Lacey Rutledge led the Highlands offense with perfect 3-3 at the plate with a double and two singles. Kyndal Brown and Madison Bennett also collected singles in game three.
Madalyn Morton started the game. Morton allowed six hits, six earned runs, and struck out four. Montana Ledbetter finished out the game collecting a strikeout.
Georgia Highlands Softball finished the 2021 season with an overall record of 23-21, and a record of 17-9 in GCAA conference play. This team has been through and overcome a lot in their time together with COVID, seemingly endless amounts of rain, and schedule changes galore. We could not be more proud of this team, and wish the absolute best for those players who are moving on next year. Until next season Charger fans!