Vicksburg 12U All-Stars eliminated in regional

Published 8:18 pm Saturday, July 28, 2018

WACO, Texas — On the second pitch of the game Saturday, Mary Hossley ripped a line drive to left field and circled the bases for an inside-the-park home run that gave the Vicksburg 12U All-Stars a 1-0 lead over River Ridge, Louisiana.

Sadly, that was as good as it got.

The Mississippi champions only managed one other hit, committed six errors that led to eight unearned runs, and were eliminated from the Little League Softball Southwest Regional with a 13-1 loss to the Louisiana champs.

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“It obviously was not our day today. Louisiana is one heck of a team and they showed it this afternoon. They were dominant on offense and played great in the field,” Vicksburg coach Mike Foley said.

The loss brought to an end a memorable run for the Vicksburg squad in its first taste of Little League tournament play. Vicksburg went 2-2 in four games and rallied to win an elimination game on Friday. Abby Morgan pitched the first three games — she had to play the field Saturday because of the tournament’s innings limit on pitchers — and posted a 1.41 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 17 innings.

All in all, Foley said, it was the kind of performance he and his players could walk away from with their heads held high.

“There are no words to express how proud me and the coaches are of our players. We came into this tournament wanting to represent our city, our state and ourselves in the best way possible. I believe we did that,” Foley said. “Our performance in this tournament should show the level of softball talent that is being developed in Vicksburg. We have very talented girls and they showed up, and showed out this week. Our run at the tournament might have ended before we wanted it to, but we will be back.Mississippi will be back.”

Saturday’s game got out of hand quickly. After Hossley’s home run, Louisiana pitcher Hailey Peterson struck out the side and retired six of the last seven batters she faced. Peterson finished with four strikeouts in two innings, and reliever Kayla Giardina had three strikeouts over the last two innings.

Makayla Jackson reached on a single in the second inning to account for Vicksburg’s only other baserunner.
Louisiana, meanwhile, took advantage of Vicksburg’s errors and some hot hitting to erupt for 13 runs in the bottom of the second. Peterson had an RBI double for one of Louisiana’s seven hits in the inning.

Peterson finished 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs scored, Ava Burkett scored twice, and Damari Harris had two RBIs for Louisiana, which beat Texas East 2-0 in another elimination game Saturday.

Louisiana advanced to Sunday’s single-elimination championship game against Texas West (Greater Helotes Little League of San Antonio). That game will begin at 1 p.m. and will be broadcast on the Longhorn Network and ESPN Plus.