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Erika Mullins hits go-ahead double in 7th, Man LL wins 7-6 over Craigsville in LL State Softball Tournament

Bill Lusk | WVOW Sports


FAYETTEVILLE  Erika Mullins doubled home the go-ahead run with two outs in the top of the seventh and the Man Little League fought off elimination defeating the Craigsville Little League 7-6 in seven innings Monday evening in the West Virginia Little League Softball State Tournament at Charlie McCoy Town Park.


Mullins had two doubles and drove in three runs for Man, who will face Hedgesville Tuesday evening at 8 p.m. in the losers’ bracket of the Mountaineer division. Hedgesville defeated St. Albans 7-0 in one of four elimination games Monday.


Man starting pitcher Mia Johnson gave up six runs – four earned – on five hits and struck out seven while walking four in five innings. Brianna Blankenship got the win with two hitless innings of relief and three strikeouts.


Blankenship relieved Johnson in the sixth inning after Johnson issued a leadoff walk to Kendall Russell. The first batter Blankenship faced, Natalya Webb, reached on an error by Blankenship.


Jennifer Meadows grounded into a fielder’s choice moving Russell to third base with one out. Russell would be stranded at third as Blankenship struck out Quinleigh Hayhurst and got Addy Dodrill to line out to first to send the game to extra innings.


Carly Caserta singled to center with one out in the seventh and stole second with Johnson at the plate before Jenna Williams got Johnson to strike out looking setting the stage for Mullins.


Mullins didn’t waste any time as she doubled to left on the first pitch to score Caserta giving Man a 7-6 lead.


Chesni Rose reached on an error to start the bottom of the seventh for Craigsville, but Blankenship got Lily King to pop out and struck out Williams and Aubrey McClure to end the game.


Williams tossed a complete game in a losing effort for Craigsville allowing seven runs – three earned – on six hits with 15 strikeouts and four walks in seven innings and was 1-for-3 at the plate with two runs scored.


Man jumped out to 3-0 lead in the first inning. Mullins started the scoring with a double to score Johnson with the first run of the game and then came around to score on a passed ball to give Man a 2-0 lead. The third run of the inning crossed the plate when Blankenship scored on an error.


Craigsville scored one run in the first and second innings to trim the deficit to 3-2 scoring on a pair of Man errors. Williams crossed the plate in the first to make it 3-1 and Hayhurst scored in the second.


In the top of the third, Mullins grounded out to bring home Johnson, giving Man a 4-2 lead, however, Craigsville would knot the score at 4-all in the bottom of the third when Teagan Metz doubled to plate Williams and McClure with the tying runs.


The back-and-forth scoring continued into the fourth inning when Lydia Smith and Caserta scored on a pair of Craigsville errors to give Man a 6-4 lead.


Craigsville once again evened the score in the bottom of the fourth when Rose drove home Hayhuharst with a run scoring single and came around to score on a Man error to tie the game at 6.


Metz had a double and two RBIs while Rose had one hit and one RBI for Craigsville, who also got one hit each from Emilee Henline and McClure.


Johnson had one hit and scored two runs while Anna Belcher, Caserta and Blankenship each had one hit for Man.


West Virginia Little League Softball State Tournament

Charlie McCoy Town Park- Fayetteville, WV

Man 7, Craigsville 6 (7 Innings)


Man                301 200 1- 7 6 5

Craigsville    112 200 0- 6 5 4

Johnson, Blankenship (6) and Mullins. Williams and Rose. Top hitters- M: Mullins 2-3, 2 2B, 3 RBI; Johnson 1-3, 2 R; Belcher 1-4; Blankenship 1-4, 2B; Caserta 1-4. C: Metz 1-2, 2B, 2 RBI; Rose 1-3, RBI; Williams 1-3, 2 R; Henline 1-3; McClure 1-4, R; Hayhurst 0-1 2 R.



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