Tuesday, May 8, 2018

ECCC Softball Advances to NJCAA Region 23 Tournament

The No. 10 East Central Community College Lady Warrior softball team finished up the 2018 Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges State Tournament with a 1-2 record, good enough to advance to the upcoming Region 23 Tournament.

The MACJC State Tournament was played May 4-7 on the campus of Itawamba Community College in Fulton.

The Lady Warriors dropped a tough 5-2 decision to No. 4 ranked Jones County Junior College on the opening day of the double-elimination tournament. After all play was postponed on Saturday due to rain, the Lady Warriors bounced back to defeat Pearl River Community College 3-2 on Sunday to qualify for the National Junior College Athletic Association Region 23 Tournament. East Central was then eliminated from the state tournament Sunday evening with an 11-3 loss to No. 3 Itawamba.

The 2018 NJCAA Region 23 Tournament will also be held on the ICC campus in Fulton May 10-12. No. 2 ranked LSU-Eunice will join East Central, Jones County, and Itawamba in the double-elimination tournament.

Two teams advance from the region tournament to play at the NJCAA Division II Softball Championship at Traceway Park in Clinton on May 16-19.
In East Central’s opener in the state tournament, the Lady Warriors took a 2-1 lead to the bottom of the sixth inning when Jones County pushed four runs across the plate for the 5-2 win. East Central’s runs came on a single by Shelby Walters of Northwest Rankin in the third and a solo home run from Kayla Beckham of Neshoba Central in the fourth.

East Central had to go extra innings in the region-clinching win over Pearl River on Sunday. The Lady Warriors took a 2-0 lead with two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, before Pearl River tied the score 2-2 in the top of the fifth.

The contest remained tied until the bottom of the eighth when with two outs Kenyatta Moore out of Philadelphia was hit by a pitch. The speedy Moore then scored all the way from first when the next batter Walters hit a hard grounder to second base that was misplayed.

Eva Scott (Burleson, Texas, Centennial) and Madalyn McMahon of Neshoba Central both went three-for-three at the plate against Pearl River. Kaitlyn Oswalt out of Heritage Academy in Columbus got the win with three and a third innings of relief work, giving up just one hit and no runs.

East Central was eliminated Sunday evening in the 11-3 loss to Itawamba. The Lady Indians jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the top of the first on three singles and aided by a hit batter and Lady Warrior error.

The Lady Warriors closed the gap to 3-1 in the bottom of the inning on a run-scoring sacrifice fly off the bat of Scott.

Itawamba scored two more in the top of the second, and East Central answered with two of its own runs in the bottom of the second to make the score 5-3. After that it was all Lady Indians as Itawamba scored again in the third and then added five runs in the fourth to pull away.