(2009 - 2010) - Softball

vs. Hillcrest High,

Date: May. 12, 2010
Time: 06:00 PM
Location: Mauldin High School

MHS 5 - Hillcrest 1        game photos

MHS Sweeps Rival Hillcrest out of the Upper State Playoffs!

        R  H   E 

HHS   1   4   4
MHS   5   9  1
WP: Ashley Bagwell(22-3) 4k,0bb
Hitters: Kenzi Corn 2-4,3b;Brianna Davis 2-4,2b;
Dana Landers 1-4;2b;Jordan Stovall 1-4;
Bria Barnhill 2-3;Brook Barnhill 1-3
RBI/RS: K.Corn 1rbi/2rs;B.Davis 3rbi;
D.Landers 1rbi;Ba.Barnhill 2rs;
Bk.Barnhill 1rs
Record: 24-3


      On an overcast Wednesday evening, when the faithful Baptists and
Boiling Spring Lady Bulldog families were in church, Mauldin's Lady Mav
Softball team met Hillcrest's Lady Rams in an Upper State Tournament
elimination game at Clayton field.  Hillcrest had been playing well since
upsetting Mauldin's senior night celebration, 4 to 2 on April 23rd.  Like
Mauldin, they pranced through their District tournament, upsetting highly
ranked Nations Ford in the process, before having similar results in the
first two rounds of the Upper state playoffs - a loss to Boiling Springs
and victory over Laurens High.  But here they were - friends, some even
Summer teammates, yet bitter rivals... facing off in a State Tournament
Elimination game that would see the winner into the final 4 with dreams
still alive, and the loser relegated to a two-way tie for 5th place in the
      Mauldin's Ace, Ashley Bagwell,  took her place inside her golden
brown circular workspace and slung 12 inch circumference yellow orbs
upwards of 60 mph towards home plate and her catcher, Jordan Stovall.
first in line to try and redirect or deflect the prized orbs was Sylver
Samuel - the speedy centerfielder.  Bagwell was able to jam the dangerous
baserunner with the result a pop fly out handled by Bria Barnhill near
second base.  Next to enter the firing zone was Mac Cox, another speedy
slapping outfielder Mauldin would rather see in the dugout than on the
basepaths. Cox blooped the second pitch into short left field and strode to
first base.  As she rounded she got to see a spectacular play that set the
tone for the game.  Senior leftfielder Weslyn Jones charged hard and dove
forward to just catch the "Texas Leaguer" in her outstretched webbing for
the second out.  The third out was made on a liner hit back to and caught
by Bagwell in the pitcher's circle, but an important statement had been
made by Jones and her teammates unlike in the last meeting... The Lady Mavs
were here to play on this night and werent going to leave anything in the
tank - they were going to put full body and soul into this game and not
allow the game or any inning to get out of control !
      Courtney Roberts is Hillcrest's Ace.  She delivered the first pitch
to Mauldin's Kenzi Corn and watched as the bouncer hugged the baseline in
the "no-mans land", 1/3rd the distance between the plate and first base.
Corn moved inside the baseline to avoid running into the ball, but the ball
found her...  Roberts fielded and threw towards first, but struck Corn in
the back (scored as a throwing error), providing her safe passage to first
base and possibly a slight bruise. The Hillcrest Coaches protested but were
quickly quieted.  Corn stole second but wouldnt advance further as the next
three batters failed to roust the Hillcrest outfielders, nor deliver an RBI
hit.  Bagwell continued to let her defense do their work and exercised good
control and movement in the top of the second and third innings. In the two
Hillcrest frames 6 batters came to the plate...three were retired on
groundouts to short where Dana Landers fielded and threw to Senior First
Baseman, Amelia Gillentine... two were bounced back to the mound, from
which Bagwell did the same, and one was played nicely and thrown from third
to first by Freshman Brianna Davis.  Through three, Mauldin was errorless
and Hillcrest, hitless.  It was time for the offense to do its part !
      In the bottom of the second, a high and deep fly ball was hit by
Gillentine directly behind the Hillcrest rightfielder.  A two or three
bagger was avoided by Hillcrest as Mac Cox chased it back and made a basket
catch, ( a la Willie Mays, for those of old enough to remember the say Hey
Kid in the Polo Grounds). Katelyn Wagers then reached on a throwing error
by Hillcrest's third baseman.  An out later, Bria Barnhill battled from
down 1-2 to earn a walk and push Wagers into scoring position.  It was for
naught however when a groundout to shortstop ended the home team hopes of
jumping out early against their nemesis.  The bottom of the third would be
slightly different.  Back at the top of the order, Mauldin led off with
Kenzi Corn who smashed the second pitch to the fence in right-centerfield
for a triple that ignited her teammates and the late arriving, yet capacity
crowd.  Brianna Davis followed with a beautiful double to right-centerfield
that scored Corn and left her standing proudly on second base.  A flyout to
center later, Jordan Stovall punched a hit into short leftfield to move
Davis to third. Two infield outs prevented further scoring, but the Lady
Mavs had drawn first blood and were gaining momentum on offense, while
their pitching and defense remained stout !
      Bagwell, who was perfect through 3, even if not in max strike-out
mode, made another play on a roller back to the mound for the first out in
the top of the 4th.  Then with a 1-2 count, a curveball got away and
plunked Cox in the back, certainly leaving a mark that would rival the one
Kenzi Corn obtained several innings earlier.  A flyout to Landers at short
and another made against the backstop by a hustling Stovall ended the
Hillcrest rally before it started.  Mauldin's offensive half of the 4th
started with a well hit ball into rightfield and a better play by Cox who
scooped it and threw out Bagwell at first to rob her tormenter of a hit and
record an out against Mauldin.  The Barnhill sisters livened things up even
more when Bria placed a line drive into centerfield for a one-out hit.
Elder sister Brooke reached base by using foot speed to take advantage of a
bobble by the Hillcrest second baseman on a hard hit grounder.  Then
Mauldin's on-base percentage leader, Kenzi Corn rapped a drive into
leftfield to push the younger Barnhill across the plate.  Brianna Davis
followed Corn with a long drive to left that was caught for out number two,
but drove in Mauldin run number three when Brooke Barnhill scored on the
sacrifice fly.  Dana Landers then came to the plate and  battled from a 1-2
count through a 12 pitch at bat during which she fouled off 6 straight
pitches...then delivered a fence rattling RBI double into left centerfield
that brought Corn across the plate with Mauldin's 4th run.  A flyout ended
the inning, but the Mauldin faithful breathed just a little easier sporting
a 4 run lead past the mid-point with the Visitors yet to summon a hit
against Bagwell and the Mauldin defense.
      In the top of the 5th, Hillcrest's fortunes began to change.  Bagwell
and stovall struck out the 1st and third batters they faced in that half
inning, and finally gave up a hit to Lady Ram Brooke Camerato who hit a
shot into leftfield.  Camerato advanced to second on a Wild Pitch, but then
watched an aforementiond "K" and an unassisted putout by Amelia Gillentine
at first base which ended the inning for the ladies in black and red.
Mauldin went down quick in the bottom of the fifth with 3 consecutive
fly-outs.  The first was exciting to both teams and sets of
fans...initially the Mauldin side thought a long ball to deep center hit by
Gillentine was leaving the ballpark and that Gillentine would get to trot
bases..., but the Hillcrest side got to cheer at the end of the play when
fleet centerfielder Sylver Samuel tracked the blast to the fence and
reached up to make the catch just before the ball would have cleared or
struck the barrier in the deepest part of Clayton field.
      The top of the 6th started like most others had for Hillcrest on this
evening.  The Mauldin defense was playing well and recorded a ground ball
out before Bagwell would face the top of the lady Ram order for the third
time.  Samuel topped a high bouncer toward second base. Bria Barnhill
charged it and did everything  possible to make a quick play on the quicker
runner, but there was ultimately no chance and Hillcrest had their second
hit of the game. Mac Cox followed by pulling a changeup into rightfield for
another hit.  A fielders choice, made unassisted by Brianna Davis at third
erased the lead runner, Samuel, from the bases and meant there were two
outs and Hillcrest running out of both outs and opportunities to get back
into this game.  Courtney Roberts belted a single into left that scored Cox
for the rams first run of the game.  That would be all the Hillcrest
scoring in the 6th though as Bagwell and Stovall clamped down on
Hillcrest's top power-hitter, striking out the young third baseman who had
3 RBIs in the previous contest between these two teams.
      Mauldin added an insurance run in the bottom of the 6th when Bria
Barnhill punched another single up the middle and was moved to second on a
bunt single by her sister. After Corn made a rare (for her) out, Brianna
Davis drove a long single into left-center to bring the sophomore second
baseman across the plate.  A fielder's choice made the senior rightfielder
out number 2 at third and a popout behind the plate ended the inning.  At
the end of 6 complete ...Mauldin 5, Hillcrest 1.  That would remain the
score as Hillcrest could muster no more in the top of the 7th than a
baserunner who reached on a long dropped fly ball.  Gillentine recorded an
out unassisted for the 1st and Bria Barnhill cashed out the next on a
leaping snag of a line drive heading towards right centerfield.  Bagwell
and Stovall struck out the last batter of the inning, game, and Hillcrest's
      So the Lady Mavs lived to play another day and advanced to the final
4 of the State Softball 4A tournament.  The road remains uphill for the
capable Mauldin Softballer's as they travel back to Boiling Springs to face
the Lady Bulldogs.  The first game starts at 6:00 pm and the second at 8:00
pm.  Mauldin must beat Boiling Springs twice to advance to the 4A State
Finals.  Boiling Springs must win only once.  The lady Mavs lead the season
series against Boiling Springs, having won both meetings in the regular
season. The Bulldogs won most recently this past Monday in the one that
counted most ...until tomorrow !    Come Support our Lady Mavs as they
fight to earn their ticket to the state championship finals.  It could be a
long and joyous evening of super softball !  GO MAVS !!!