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SGA rolls in state tournament opener

DAMASCUS -- The No. 2-seeded SGA softball team cruised into the second round of the GISA Class AA state tournament Saturday by routing Central Fellowship by a combined 21-1 in a pair of games that were shortened by run rule.

SGA (15-2) won Game 1, 8-0, in six innings, then demolished the opposition, 13-1, in five innings in the second game, led both times by a stellar afternoon on the mound by ace Bailey Ponder. She struck out six in the first game and five in the second game, giving up a combined three hits between the two contests. Ponder improved to 13-2 on the season and propels the Lady Warriors into the next round against defending state champ Flint River.

SGA, which was saddled with the No. 2 seed after losing the coin flip earlier this week with Citizen's Christian, will have to travel -- much to the dismay of Lady Warriors coach Tommy Manry.

"It's a bad rule and we need to change it," he said. "CCA's coach told me he hated winning the No. 1 seed like that (after we tied for the region championship)."

In Game 1, SGA was led by Baylee Everson (3-for-4, two RBI) and Hayley Chappell (single, two RBI). Then in Game 2, Everson had a monster outing with two doubles and five RBI, while Kyndal Carver singles, doubled and posted two RBI. Addison Ponder, Bailey's younger sister, added a hit and an RBI.

SGA will open its next series with Flint River on Tuesday at 11 a.m. and will finish the best-of-three series in one day.