LOCAL COLLEGE/PREP ROUNDUP: Darton’s Dearth homers again as Lady Cavs sweep; ASU softball off to 2-0 conference start

Darton's Melissa Dearth hit a three-run walk-off home run to lift the Lady Cavs to a sweep of South Georgia College on Tuesday.

Darton's Melissa Dearth hit a three-run walk-off home run to lift the Lady Cavs to a sweep of South Georgia College on Tuesday.

Trojans lose heartbreaker in final at-bat

Tift 5, Lee 2: Lee County baseball was an inning ... no, an out .... no, one strike away from its first win of the season Tuesday night.

Then the unthinkable happened.

Ahead, 2-0, in the top of the seventh inning and with two outs on the Blue Devils, who were down to their final strike — and no one on — Lee County (0-4) reliever Brent Kyzar struck out the Tift batter, but the pitch got away from the catcher, allowing Tift to put a man on first with two outs.

Matt Mears, who shouldered the loss — despite facing one batter and giving up just one hit — then came on in relief of Kyzar. Mears gave up a single that drives in a run, giving way to another Lee reliever, Chris Mosely. Mosely then walked the next two Tift batters to tie the game at 2-2. A Lee error on the next at-bat brought in another Tift runner to give the Blue Devils a 3-2 lead and a final hit brought in two more Tift runners in what turned out to be a disastrous seventh for the Trojans.

T.J. Roberts, who returned from a season-ending injury a year ago to make his first start of the year, pitched five shutout innings to get the Trojans in good position for their first win, giving up just three hits and striking out three in just 60 pitchers.

Mears drove in a run in the sixth, and Mosley drove in another to put the Trojans ahead --- but only momentarily.

“We feel a little snakebit right now,” Lee County coach Rob Williams said. “It’s hard to come any closer to a win that what we did. We played a great game. T.J. was amazing coming back from an injury. It just got away.”

Lee had just four hits and will try to rebound Friday at Northside, Columbus.

ALBANY — Darton State College softball coach David Dews said there was one primary reason he recruited Melissa Dearth.

“She can swing that bat,” Dews said Tuesday.

Yes she can.

Dearth, a freshman from Loganville, continued her torrid hitting streak Tuesday afternoon during a doubleheader sweep of Georgia Military as she smashed her fifth home run in the Lady Cavs’ last five games to give her a team-high six round-trippers on the year.

“She’s really hitting it good right now — and that’s what we brought her in here to do,” Dews said of Dearth’s latest home run, which was a three-run, walk-off bomb Tuesday to lift the Lady Cavs to a 6-5 win. “She’s really starting to catch some steam.”

Freshman Jostlyn Higgerson earned the win on the mound in Game 1, while Savannah Carlisle picked up the win in Game 2, a 4-1 victory.

Higgerson relieved a struggling Jenny Willis in the sixth inning after Willis gave up three runs on four hits. Higgerson (5-3) came on and didn’t fare much better — giving up two runs on three hits — but she was bailed out when Dearth blasted the walk-off in the bottom of the seventh with Darton down, 5-3.

Brooke Tomlin led off that inning with a walk, followed by a single from Chelsea Showers, who finished the day 2-for-4 with a double. Dearth then stepped into the box and belted a shot over the wall to send the Lady Cavs (19-6) into a wild celebration at home. Dearth was 2-for-4 in the game, while Holly Smith was 2-for-3 with a two-run double.

Darton didn’t let off the gas in the nightcap as Carlisle pitched a complete game and struck out 10, allowing just five hits.

Showers came up big again for Darton, going 3-for-3 with three RBI, a double and two home runs, while Kelsea Ogletree was 2-for-3 with a double. Tomlin also added a double.

Darton has now won eight of its last 10 games and will next hit the road to play a doubleheader with West Georgia Tech on Thursday.

Lady Rams sweep Clark Atlanta

ATLANTA — The Albany State softball team used big-run innings in each game to pull out 18-6 and 13-10 victories against Clark Atlanta.

With the wins, the Lady Rams begin conference play 2-0, although they’re just 4-10 overall.

In the first game, Albany State used an eight-run second inning to pull away from the Lady Panthers. The Lady Rams collected a total of 11 hits for the game and also took advantage of 11 walks given by Clark Atlanta. ASU catcher Chaconna Marks and Chelsea Hicks each recorded four RBI, and Kandis Banks added three more. Hicks also got the win on the mound for the Lady Rams.

In the second contest, the Lady Rams trailed, 9-7, heading into the seventh inning after Clark Atlanta scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth. However, Albany State finished the game with a fury, scoring six runs in the top of the seventh to take a commanding lead. Banks (five RBI) and shortstop Vanessa Jones (four RBI) led the way offensively for the Lady Rams. Pitcher Alexa Lopez picked up the win, while Ambrionna Atkism recorded the save.

The Lady Rams return to action Saturday when they take on Alabama A&M University in a doubleheader at the Lady Rams Softball Park. The first pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.

SGA, Terrell Academy baseball open season with wins; SCA girls soccer stays perfect

DAWSON — The Terrell Academy baseball team started its season off with a win Tuesday against Fullington Academy, 17-7, in a game that lasted just four innings.

That’s thanks in part to the pitching of Joshua Brunswick, who struck out four and allowed just two hits in 2 1/3 innings of work, as well as the bats of Caleb Waters (2-for-4, grand slam, five RBI), Dalton Dedge (3-for-4, HR, three RBI) and Clint Smith (2-for-3, three RBI).

Terrell (1-0) will next play at Brookwood on Saturday.

SOUTHWEST GEORGIA ACADEMY BASEBALL 11, RANDOLPH SOUTHERN 0, (5): The Warriors (1-0) began the 2013 baseball team with a convincing win against their neighboring rival Patriots, who are now 0-2 in the school’s final season of baseball. Randolph Southern school officials announced recently the private school in Shellman would be closing after this year.

Matthew Jernigan picked up the win on the mound, striking out nine and allowing just one hit in four innings of work.

Jake Odom collected two hits and Garrett Vann and Jernigan each added a double in the win.

Randolph notched just two hits all game in the loss.

Terrell next plays on the road Monday at Emanuel Christian in Dothan, Ala.

SHERWOOD GIRLS SOCCER 9, SOUTHLAND 0: Jordyn Paramore and Aubri Hughes each scored twice for the Lady Eagles, improved to 4-0 on the season.

Kylee Harrod, Christina Charles, Riley Nobles, Hannah King and Kaetlyn Cuff rounded out the scoring for Sherwood, which won’t play again until this weekend it joins the boys at the Trinity Crusader Classic.

Monroe soccer sweeps city rival Dougherty

ALBANY — Monroe’s boys and girls swept Dougherty in soccer on Tuesday at Dougherty. Kendalyn Stone scored six goals to lead the Monroe girls to a 7-0 win, and Shadijah Qwaiy also scored. Alyssa Keglar made 10 saves to record the shutout as Monroe improved to 1-3.

Roderick Smith and Sederick Jones scored two goals each to lead Monroe’s boys to a 4-1 win. Shondrevian Stringer made 10 saves for Monnroe, which is 1-3.

Monroe next plays at Crisp County on Tuesday.