Darlington JV softball captures Lugoff Elgin Tournament
By Will Isgett
The Darlington High School junior varsity softball team traveled to the Lugoff Elgin Mid Carolina Credit Union Junior Varsity Softball tournament this past Saturday and brought the championship trophy back to the Pearl of the Pee Dee.
The tournament had a total of 16 teams participating, including host team Lugoff Elgin, Thomas Sumter, White Knoll, Mid Carolina, Edisto, Lexington, Spring Valley, Nation Ford, Hartsville, Andrew Jackson, River Bluff, Fort Mill, Sumter, Dillon and Camden.
The junior varsity Falcons won the championship game 5-2 over Class 4A White Knoll, but not before a very scary situation broke out at an area behind the softball complex.
As the team was finishing up their championship win a gun shot was heard, which made tournament officials clear the fields.
After the ruckus, the team returned to the field and calmly finished our the win and returned to Darlington safely.
“That was a very scary situation,” Darlington assistant coach Lisa Wiley said. “But the girls really wanted it, and played with a lot of heart and determination. This will be a tournament that we will always remember.”
What was even bigger about the tournament was the play of Darlington pitcher Ryanne Weatherford.
Head coach Tim Wiley said that Weatherford threw over 500 pitches on the day, and was a true workhorse for the team,
“In that last game she was about to give out,” Wiley said. “But she put the game on her back and carried the team.”
The junior varsity Falcons entered the championship game with only eight players available as the starting catcher injured her knee in a 2-1 loss to Edisto and the third baseman left that game with a concussion. Darlington played the championship game without a second baseman as she also went down with a concussion, Wiley said.
In the championship game, Nyasia Williamson went 3-for-4 at the plate, while Kadasia Damon went 2-for-4, Hailey Durant went 2-for-3 with two RBI’s and Kathleen Sumner went 1-for-3 with two RBI’s.
The junior varsity ladies started the day with an 11-1 win over Class 2A Mid Carolina High School. Leading hitters for Darlington include Weatherford who went 2-for-2 with two RBI’s and Durant who also went 2-for-2 with two RBI’s. Sumner was the winning pitcher giving up one run on three hits and one strikeout.
In the second game Darlington picked up an 11-1 win against Class 4A Spring Valley. Damon went 2-for-2 with an RBI and Weatherford went 2-for-2 with two RBI’s. Weatherford also picked up the win giving up three hits and striking out one. After the loss to Edisto in the game three, Darlington faced SCISA power Thomas Sumter and won 8-6. The JV ladies trailed 4-0 before making a comeback. Jadaysia Richardson went 2-for-3 with three RBI’s, while Danni Stokes went 2-for-3 with one RBI. Weatherford also picked up the win on the mound.
The varsity Lady Falcons strengthened its playoff positioning with three big road wins last week. The Lady Falcons downed Manning 14-3, Marlboro County 10-0 and followed that up with a 15-0 win over Lakewood last Friday.
Darlington was 7-1 in the region heading into its game with Crestwood this past Tuesday and will travel to Hartsville on Friday with a possible region title on the line. Hartsville beat the Lady Falcons 14-6 earlier this season.
Regardless of the outcome of both games Darlington will play host to a Class 3A first round game on May 1.
In the Manning game, Adrianna Weatherford was the winning pitcher striking out six and giving up only two hits. Hannah Gainey led Darlington offensively going 3-for-5 at the plate with four RBI’s. Deja Turner also went 3-for-4.
Against Marlboro County, Weatherford picked up another win with ten strikeouts and only giving up one hit. Haley Clark went 3-for-5 at the plate, Crystal James went 2-for-4 with two RBI’s and Lillie Baumbach went 2-for-4.
Weatherford’s dominance on the mound continued in the Lakewood win as she gave up only one hit on the mound. Gainey went 1-for-2 at the plate with three RBI’s, while Kirsten Stone went 1-for-2 with two RBI’s and James went 3-for-3 with three RBI’s.