“It was almost identical to [Thursday] night. We got a run early ... and then the game just went on. After that first inning, it was just great defense behind [pitcher] Taylor [Funk],” Central coach Jimmy LeBlanc said. “Rebekah Smith came in and made a diving catch for a third out, Hayley Sims catches a hard line drive for the third out one time. Then the game ended with runners on first and second and their No. 3 hitter up and Jordyn Scott makes a great play going to her right and winds up being able to step on the bag [at second] to end the game.”
No. 6 Central (24-7) scored in the bottom of the first inning for the second straight day against the Lady Panthers (19-13), as Sims reached on a single and came around to score on an RBI single by Scott.
From there, it was Funk and a strong defensive showing behind her. The sophomore right-hander allowed six hits and four walks with eight strikeouts to earn the victory.
Central will now play host to the opening round of the Class AAA state tournament in a best-of-three series that begins on Wednesday. The if-game would be Thursday. The Lady Lions will host the No. 4 seed from Region 1, but LeBlanc wasn’t certain exactly who it would be as of press time Friday evening.
“It may be Brantley County or somebody like that. I just haven’t seen any final results. I saw kind of how it was panning out a little bit, but I haven’t seen any finals,” he said.
Haralson County (8-20) is also postseason-bound after upsetting Callaway — 9-8 in nine innings — on Thursday before suffering an 11-3 setback to Rockmart in the late game that evening to make it the No. 4 seed out of Region 4 for the Class AAA state playoffs. The Rebelettes will travel to south Georgia and face the No. 1 seed from Region 1 in the opening round of the playoffs on Wednesday in the best-of-three series.