(2009 - 2010) - Softball

vs. Summerville HS,

Date: May. 19, 2010
Time: 06:00 PM
Location: Summerville High School

Mauldin High 2010 4-A State Softball Champions!      game photos



  Just another softball game, right ?  Relax and play your game...
Yeah, right !   That was the well-intentioned message to the Mauldin
Varsity Softballers as they boarded the bus at 9:00 am on Thursday morning
for a 4 hour trip to Summerville, where they would face the Green Wave in
the second and possibly final game of the 2010 4A State Championship series
at 6:00 pm that evening.  The players were giddy with excitement, but
infused with steely veteran leadership and gridiron tested coaches, the
Lady Mavs would be ready for the showdown in unfamiliar territory.  In
Summerville, the Green Wave team looked more relaxed and comfortable than
they had been in Mauldin.  The home team in Green and White had some
skilled and athletic players that knew they hadnt shown or played their
best to the Upstate Champs in the previous contest - won by Mauldin, 10-0
in 6 innings Tuesday.
      Kenzi Corn stepped into the left hander's batters box to face
Summerville's Mallory Myers to start the game.  2 pitches later Corn
bounced hard back to the mound and was thrown out at first. A similar fate
befell Brianna Davis and Mauldin was seemingly not imposing their will and
gameplan onto the homestanding Lower state champs as they had done two days
earlier.  With two outs and a 1-1 count to Mauldin Junior shortstop, Dana
Landers, things got a little brighter and louder for the many Mauldin
parents, students, and school staff in attendance....Landers crushed a
homerun deep over the left-centerfield fence to give the Lady Mavs an early
1-0 lead.  An excited group of teammates met, crowded, and congratulated
their shortstop at the plate.   The solo blast would be all the damage
Mauldin would inflict in the top of the first...A walk to Senior Jordan
Stovall went unrequited when the third out was turned by the left side of
the Green Wave infield.
       Seemingly undaunted, Ashley Mucklevaney reached first quickly when
she slapped the ball at Mauldin Ace, Ashley Bagwell's feet. The senior
pitcher got the tip of her glove on the ball and deflected it towards Bria
Barnhill at second.  the Sophomore second baseman changed directions,
charged, and necessarily rushed a throw to try and get the speedy lead-off
hitter.  The throw was barely in time but just wide enough to pull Senior
Amelia Gillentine off the base and generate a safe call. The home crowd
roared their approval.  They did so again when, rather than attempt a steal
by the Lower State's leading base thief, catcher Katelyn Clark laid down a
successful sacrifice bunt to move Mucklevaney to second.  Freshman third
baseman Brianna Davis charged the bunt and threw to Bria Barnhill at first
for the out.  Barnhill's alertness to Mucklevaney's potential to try and
take third prevented it.  Summerville second baseman, Nicole Seavy then hit
a line drive into right field that looked scary leaving the infield, but
Brooke Barnhill was positioned well and made the catch a few strides over
her right shoulder.  Mucklevaney threatened again to take third but was
deterred by a belt high strike thrown by the Senior rightfielder to Davis
at third.  With two outs and a runner at second, Bagwell induced her
opposite pitcher to bounce out back to the pitcher's circle for the third
out. As if a boxing match, the first round went to the visiting Lady Mavs
      The top of the second generated some excitement for the visiting
entourage, but nothing on the scoreboard.  Myers struck out the first
Mauldin batter she faced in the second frame, then Bagwell hit a ball to
second base.  Seavy collected the ball but threw high to first allowing
Bagwell to reach safely. A courtesy runner was inserted for Mauldin's
pitcher and another strikeout followed.  With two outs and a runner at
first, Brooke Barnhill hit a drive toward the 3-4 hole.  A diving Seavy
stopped the grounder but threw wide from her knees to first. With Barnhill
safe, an opportunity presented itself for another base to be taken as the
ball rolled to the first base dugout entryway.  A delay at second base cost
Mauldin's runner the base as the sliding Mav was tagged out to end the
Orange's offensive half of the second.
      Bagwell cruised in the bottom of the second, striking out the first
and third batters.  In between, a great catch was made for the second out
when Green Wave third baseman, Alexa Ritchie drove a rope down the
leftfield line, but a hustling Weslyn Jones caught the line drive high over
her right shoulder as she approached the fence for the web-gem catch and
out.  The top of the third saw the lady Mavs firing on all cylinders and
executing like the football/softball coaches had drawn it up in the
pre-game.  Kenzi Corn easily beat out an infield hit to the right side.
Brianna Davis stroked a single to right  to put runners on first and second
with no outs.  Coach Joseph Terry then had a private consultation with his
third hitter and owner of the game's lone RBI. Dana Landers.  A surprise
was in store when Landers squared late and put down a sacrifice bunt to
move Corn and Davis.  Caught offguard, the pitcher fielded the ball and
threw low to first where the ball was dropped as Landers crossed the base.
Bases loaded and Stovall at the plate....a dilemma that gave Region
opponents night sweats, but Stovall had been held in check so far in the
State series both by walks and defensive plays made as the slugger was
pressing.  The Summerville Brain trust decided to pitch to the Mauldin
senior and All-State catcher. She fouled off the first pitch then watched
two miss the strike zone.  The fourth pitch  was too good to miss and
Stovall didnt miss it ! With another signature powerful swing, the lady Mav
lead was extended to 5 runs !  A grand slam for Stovall and command of the
State final game was achieved on the bomb resounding from Stovall's bat.
Stovall trotted around the bases with a huge smile on her pretty face as
Corn, Davis, and Landers stepped on the plate in succession ahead of #2 and
joined the celebration just beyond it, waiting for its hero.  But there was
still a lot of game to play and no outs in the top of the third for the
Mauldin Softballers.  A hard linedrive was caught at third base for the
first out before 7th Grader and future Mav catcher, Katelyn Wagers, punched
a single up the middle.  A fielders choice from short to second erased
Wagers for the second out and put Bagwell at first.  Madison Tracy  was
inserted this time to run for the pitcher, but her time on the field was
unfortunately brief as the third out was made on a bouncer back to the
pitcher's mound and quick throw to first.
      The bottom of the third began with a walk to Green Wave rightfielder,
Casey Fowler.  She was sacrificed to second on a nice bunt by Tricia
Sizemore, who was thrown out by Bagwell to Gillentine.  All- State
shortstop Mucklevaney walked to put two on with one out, then Katelyn Clark
pounded a single into left that scored Fowler for Summerville's first run
and partial response to the powerful display made by Mauldin's offense
earlier in the inning.  In spite of the non-verbal baserunning taunts of
Mucklevaney at second base,  Mauldin's catcher kept her poise and
composure, resisting the temptation to make an ill-advised pick-off attempt
throw to second base...to the dismay of fans on both sides of the field
equally sure of a favorable outcome for their player and team.  5 pitches
into the face-off and feigning, Seavy hit a short fly to centerfield caught
by Kenzi corn for the second out. Bria Barnhill and Amelia Gillentine
combined for the third on a groundout to the right side of the infield.
Stovall and Mucklevaney jogged to their respective dugouts hoping they
would get another chance to settle the stalemate.
      In the top of the 4th, Brianna Davis and Dana Landers hit back-to
back singles with two outs to  enliven the Mauldin faithful again and
summon memories of 3 and 4 run, two out rallies  back in Boiling Springs
and Mauldin in the Upper State and District playoffs.  Stovall was walked
semi-intentionally as this time, unlike the previous, there was space on
the basepaths for her.  Junior Jessica Lyles came in to run for Stovall,
but as befell her in the first inning and Tracy in the second, their time
in the spotlight was brief... Summerville's base-loading tactic proved
successful this time as another hard line drive to third was caught for the
third out.
      The bottom of the fourth started a little shaky for the Mauldin
defense.  An error on a shot down the thrid baseline allowed Summerville
centerfielder, Sarah Montei to reach first base safely. No harm would come
of it however as Bria Barnhill and Amelia Gillentine solidly combined for a
pair of routine groundball outs at first, sandwiched around a strikeout
fashioned by the veteran All-State battery of Bagwell and Stovall.  The top
of the 5th begin for the Lady Mavs with a hustling Katelyn Wagers reaching
first on an infield error. Fleet flex outfielder, Weslyn Jones,  was
inserted as a pinch runner for the powerful blonde by Mauldin Coach Joseph
Terry in a smart move and attempt to increase Mauldin's chances of getting
an insurance run at a point in the game that it was clear Summerville was
not going to give up or go away quietly.  Jones was sacrificed to second on
a nice bunt by Bagwell, and pushed to third on a hit-and-run, almost
perfectly executed by Bria Barnhill. Her stroke of the second pitch went in
the right direction and moved the runner successfully, but ended up as a 4
to 3 second out for the Lady Mavs. Next, Brooke Barnhill slashed a drive up
the middle that would have broken a sternum and caused heart damage to
Mallory Myers, had not the Summerville pitcher instantly gotten her glove
in front of and around the threatening smash for the third out.
      There would be no quit in the home standing Green Wave team in spite
of the 5 run deficit they faced and down to their last 3 at-bats.  Slapper
Tricia Sizemore poked a fly into leftfield that was played well but dropped
to put a runner on base in front of the top of the Summerville order.
Next, speedster Ashley Mucklevaney topped an infield hit to the left side.
With two on and none out, Katelyn Clark hit a bouncer in front of the plate
and was thrown out at first by Mauldin's hustling catcher, Jordan Stovall,
but Sizemore scored on the play to move the scoreboard to 5-2 in favor of
the Visiting Lady Mavs. With Mucklevaney on second, the stare-down between
catcher and runner began again.  Stovall didnt take the bait and
Mucklevaney knew better than to risk a steal attempt, still down by 3 runs.
The next two batters were retired by Bria Barnhill and Dana Landers on
groundouts fielded and thrown to Gillentine at first in succession. The
fifth inning ended with Mucklevaney unable to move farther than third base
on the stout Mauldin defense.
      In the top of the 6th, Mauldin answered the momentum seemingly moving
towards the home team.  Kenzi Corn turned on an inside pitch and smacked a
single into rightfield to spark the Mauldin offense.  Brianna Davis laid
down an excellent sacrifice bunt , moving Corn to second.  Dana Landers
stroked the third pitch back up the middle for a hit that moved Corn to
third and she advanced to second on the throw home that prevented the smart
Senior baserunner from attempting to score. To the plate strode Stovall
with one out, first base open, and two runners in scoring
position...Summerville elected to pitch the Mauldin slugger this time.
Stovall hit the first pitch off the end of the bat towards the shortstop
with Kenzi Corn sprinting for home.  Mucklevaney scooped and threw high to
the plate but not in time to get the Veteran centerfielder who slid under
and ahead of the tag made to her shoulder. The Mauldin lead was again
extended to 4 runs as Jessica Lyles came on to run for Stovall.  With
Landers standing alertly on third, Lyles stole second uncontested, but the
two would not follow Corn across the plate as the next two batters were
retired on a pop-up in shallow center and a strikeout.  With nine outs to
play (3 of them their own), the Lady Mavs needed only to hold Summerville
to 3 runs or less to claim the second softball title and the first in 28
years for Mauldin High School.
      Mauldin Ace, Ashley Bagwell struck out the first batter she faced in
the bottom of the 6th, before giving up consecutive singles...the second of
which was a fluke !  What was supposed to be a sacrifice bunt flew gently
over the head of the charging Brianna Davis from third.  There was not much
to do but smile at the poor bunt and happy accident for the home team.  The
next batter, Casey Fowler, did get down a good sacrifice bunt advancing the
two runners into scoring position while Bagwell threw to the younger
Barnhill covering first for the second out.  Dana Landers charged a slow
roller and released quick and hard to get a lefty slapper at first to
thwart a potential rally by the Green Wave and maintain Mauldin's lead of 4
runs with one inning to play.
      The Lady Mavs went down quietly and in succession for the first time
in this game and one of the very few times since the lone (and
overwhelmingly avenged) loss in their 2010 playoff run.  A lineout to
short, a pinch-hit groundout to third by Senior Caroline Ford, and a
bouncer to first sent the Lady Mav defense back onto the field to hold the
Green Wave one more time and thus claim the State title.  Bagwell would
face the best hopes of the homestanding fans - the top of the Green Wave
order and All-stater, Ashley Mucklevaney.  # 31 in Green and white poked a
single this time into left and used her speed to capitalize on a
mishandling of the grounder, to advance to second.  Summerville catcher
Katelyn Clarke then stroked an RBI double into right center to score
Mucklevaney.  With one in, one on, and none out, Bagwell and Stovall dug in
their heels - determined not to let this game get away from them. Bagwell
induced the next batter into a harmless fly which she caught herself...
although a scary collision with Gillentine on the play gave the Mauldin
faithful uncomfortable pause.  With Gillentine back on her feet,  Bagwell
and Stovall went to work on the next batter and won the battle against the
opposing pitcher, recording a strikeout.  One out away and facing
Summerville's athletic centerfielder who represented the tying run, Bagwell
went down 2-0 then and battled back to a full count.  The sixth pitch was a
well placed curve that cut the front outside plate corner for a strike that
was inexplicably watched by the veteran hitter with two strikes already.
"Strike three" was the umpires call and so was it the third and final out
of the 2010 season.  Mauldin's Varsity Softball team had jumped out and
held on to defeat and sweep the Summerville Green Wave for the 2010 4A
state Championship !   This game was well, but not perfectly, played by the
Champions from Mauldin. It was exciting and judging from the end result -
tears and whoops of joy and exhilaration by the ladies in Orange and Brown,
converging on the mound for hugs and chest bumps, it was a fitting end to a
fantastic season by 17 young ladies and 3 coaches who gave sweat, blood,
skin, hand digits, and endless hours to Mauldin softball from February
through mid- May.  4A State Champions  !!!  CONGRATULATIONS to Coaches
Terry, Shaw, and Fowler...and to 7 Seniors and their 10 worthy teammates
who played their hearts out, reached and earned their ultimate goal this
fateful season.  "You Go Mav Girls !!!"  You are and will always be the
2010 South Carolina 4A State Softball Champions !


                                                      "The Scrivener" 


Game 2 4-A State Championship Series:

Mauldin 6 - Summerville 3

        R   H  E         

MHS    6     9    4
SHS      3     5    4
WP: Ashley Bagwell(26-3)6k 2bb,1er
Hitters: Kenzi Corn 2-4;Brainna Davis 2-3;
Dana Landers 3-4,HR; Kaitlyn Wagers 1-4:
Jordan Stovall 1-2,Grand Slam HR
RBI/RS: K.Corn 2rs;B.Davis 1rs;
D.Landers 1rbi/2rs;J.Stovall 5rbi/1rs
Final Record: 28-3