Lady Vikes must find complete game to win playoff opener|[10/09/06]

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 9, 2006

For the Warren Central Lady Vikes to advance to the second round of the playoffs, they will need to maintain a full-game’s worth of intensity.

Last year, the Lady Vikes didn’t have it and were swept in two games by a Harrison Central squad that had played just three weeks together because of Hurricane Katrina.

On Tuesday, WC (19-7) takes on another Gulf Coast team when the George County Lady Rebels (10-13) come to Lady Vikes Field for a first round, Class 5A playoff series. Game 1 of the best-of-three series starts at 3 p.m.

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For WC coach Lucy Young, the Lady Vikes need to be at the level they showed in winning the Brookhaven Tournament 10 days ago, and not the team that lost its last two regular season games, including a 7-5 loss to Brookhaven on the Lady Vikes’ senior day.

&#8220If we’re going to go deep into the playoffs, we have got to be on top of our game,” Young said after last Thursday’s disappointing loss. &#8220We’ve got to keep that intensity for the whole game. We can’t quit playing, just because we put up a couple of runs up early.”

The Lady Vikes did that against Brookhaven, scoring twice in their first at bat and then took a 5-3 lead into the fifth before falling on a late rally by Brookhaven.

&#8220In the playoffs, anytime someone gets on base, they are going to have the potential to win the ball game. Against Brookhaven, we started off well and then we dropped off,” Young said.

The veteran WC coach doesn’t know much about George County. The Lady Rebels won the last playoff spot out of a tough division which includes former state champion Moss Point and Ocean Springs.

&#8220We haven’t gotten our scouting report on them, but I think they’ll be a lot like us. They battled being inconsistent at times. We just have to be at our best,” Young said.

The Lady Vikes are led by sisters Tiffany and Mandy Fuller. Tiffany Fuller anchors the Lady Vikes’ defense in left field while also being a consistent hitter in both with gap power and speed to beat out infield singles.

Mandy Fuller is the team’s top power hitter and RBI leader with more than a dozen extra base hits.

First baseman Bridgit Dillon, shortstop Shawn Johnson and Mandy Bordelon provide solid bats in the middle of the Lady Vikes’ lineup.