The Lady Vikings displayed some of their post-season know how against Germantown on Friday with a late rally that took advantage of the Lady Mavericks’ youth.
Arriann Henry scored the winning run on a botched pick off attempt in North Pontotoc’s final at bat to lead the defending North Half champions to a 7-6 win in Game 1 of the best-of-three MHSAA Class 4A fastpitch playoffs.
The series will be decided today at Germantown, a newly formed school in Madison County which is making its first post-season appearance in the sport.
“We’re starting to get our ‘want to’ back,” said Henry, who finished 2 for 4 with a pair of doubles and two RBIs. “Whatever gets us the win. I don’t care how, as long as we get the win.”
Germantown (12-9) scored four runs in the top of the sixth to go ahead 6-2. North Pontotoc (21-7) rallied for three in the bottom of the frame, to pull within 6-5. A three-run double by Chandler Gates cashed in on a pair of fielding errors that had loaded the bases.
Kelsey Robertson (10-3) relieved Gates, North’s starter, and retired the side in the seventh. In the bottom of the inning, Lauren Rodgers led off with a single and scored on Henry’s double to center to tie it with no outs.
Two batters later, Henry stole third and trotted home on a late putout attempt when the ball sailed into left field.
“We were down four runs and my girls could have quit, but we kept battling,” said North Pontotoc coach Shane Montgomery, whose squad won the 4A state championship in 2010. “I’m proud of the girls for not quitting and not giving up.”
Sydney Shell, a freshman, took the loss for the Lady Mavericks.