Northside captures 4A State Softball Championship

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - A great pitching performance and an equally great game at the plate helped the Northside Patriots capture the 4A State Championship in Columbus on Saturday. A 6-0 shutout win over Stephens County capped off a great season for the Pats.

It wasn't all perfect, though. They came into Saturday's championship in the winner's bracket, needing just one win to take home the title. Stephens County took the first game 2-0 in what was a pitcher's duel through the first five innings.

It was scoreless until the bottom of the 6th when Stephens County's Kayley Sellers drove in Amy Singletary. They put up another run to take the 2-0 lead, and Emma Whitfield pitched a six-hit shutout, giving the Indians the win and forcing a winner-take-all final game.

Northside made absolutely sure they didn't fall in game two. Hannah George put the Patriots on the board in the first inning with an RBI single that scored Kennedi Bedell. Later in the first, freshman Kaylee Fuller belted a two-run home run, giving Northside a 3-0 lead.

In the 4th, the Patriots picked up another pair of runs as Jada Chadwick's single to left brought home Jacelyn Lahr and Emily Holmes to make it 5-0 Northside.

George was lights out on the hill in game two. She pitched a one-hit shutout with eight strikeouts. Northside took home the win and the title with a 6-0 final score in the final game of the year.

"It means the world to me," George, the senior pitcher, said. "We've been working hard for this for four years. Me and Ciara started from the bottom and now we're here. We've finally got a state trophy and I'm really excited. It's just an amazing experience."

"It just feels so amazing," Fuller said. "I'm just so happy to be here with my team. We worked hard all season for this moment and we're finally here."

"It feels unbelievable," coach Brandon Jenkins said. "It's been a long 12 months. I told the girls after last year, I said remember this score. We got beat 3-to-1 and I said that won't happen again. They worked really hard this offseason and they put in the work and we weren't going to be satisfied with anything but a state championship. Got a great group of girls. They love each other and we love them. There ain't nothing they wouldn't do for each other."

The Patriots finish with a record of 34-3.

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