High School Softball
County lineups seek trips to Elite 8
by Doug Gorman
Three high school softball teams from Coweta stand two victories away from advancing to respective Georgia High School Association Elite 8 Tournaments in Columbus.
For East Coweta (26-8), a second-round Class AAAAAA series begins in its own backyard, while both Newnan (23-8) and Northgate (23-6-1) will have to win their playoff contests on the road.
All three series start today with doubleheaders and a potential third game scheduled for Thursday, if necessary.
The Lady Indians will host Harrison (22-7), the No. 2 seed out of Region 4-AAAAAA.
Road trips include Newnan traveling to Alcovy and Northgate facing former area rival Harris County (24-7) in a rematch of last year’s first-round state playoff series won by the Lady Vikings.
East Coweta swept Coffee County 8-1, and 13-3 in the first round, while Harrison didn’t allow a run in its first-round victory, sweeping Luella 4-0 and 3-0.
Both Newnan and Northgate had to play a third contest to advance in their first-round playoff series.
The Lady Cougars advanced past Colquitt winning the first game 9-1, but losing to the Lady Packers 4-3 in the nightcap to force third and deciding game. Newnan took advantage of a sixth-inning home run from Chacyie Goggins to clinch the series 1-0.
Alcovy dropped the first game against North Cobb, but rallied with 11-3 and 3-0 victories in the last two contests.
Northgate also has its eye on getting back to Columbus and winning its second state title since 2011 and third in school history.
The Lady Vikings advanced to the second-round by beating Greenbrier in three games in a battle of the No. 2 and No. 4 ranked teams in Class AAAAA. Despite losing game one, 11-10, Northgate won the final two in 11-2 and 3-1 decisions.
Harris County assured itself a spot in the second round with two shutout victories over Glynn Academy, winning 14-0 and 19-0.
East Coweta comes enters the second round after getting solid pitching from Morgan Goree.
The sophomore pitcher struck out eight in the team’s series’ clinching victory over Coffee County. At the plate, Kia Smith and Shemiah Sanchez each drove in two runs.
In addition to Goggins timely hits, Newnan pitcher Tori Loveless also pitched around trouble in the deciding game, getting strikeouts in the fifth and seventh.
Lauren Ferguson, Lindsay Stewart and Arden Jobe came through with RBIs during the series.
Northgate pitcher McKenzie Peace led the the Lady Vikings to victory in the third game with five strikeouts over Greenbrier.