By Anthony S. Puca
Mike "Gumby" Wortham, coach of the Marshall County Little League 9-10 softball All-Stars believes the third time will be the charm for his team as they came back from a 9-8 opening night loss to sweep the last two games of the best of three series from Giles County to claim a spot in the Little League State Tournament in Bartlett, TN.
"After our loss on Friday the girls got a little down, but they battled back on Sunday and they have not let up since", Wortham said after the title clinching 16-8 win on Monday night.
Medley, Mad Dog, Mecia, & Mousey send Marshall
Monday night's rubber match for the championship saw nine-year old Grace Medley turn in an outstanding performance in the circle as she pitched a complete game and was in control the entire contest in Marshall County's 11-6 title clinching victory.
"To never be in that situation and just be nine years old and turn in that kind of performance is just outstanding," Gumby proudly said after the game.
The game had plenty of heroes for Marshall County as "Mad Dog" Thomason had an outstanding offensive performance, driving in the eventual game winning run in the fourth inning and provided excellent defense at shortstop.
Mecia Reed came through in a big way, going 2-4 with two RBI's and finished off an inning ending double play in the bottom of the fifth and Ashton Watkins went a perfect 4-4 with three runs scored.
Championship teams always get great performances from their role players and it was no different in this game as "Gumby's" girls from the bench contributed clutch plays at crucial moments in the game.
Kristin "Mousey" Graham had two huge hits in pressure situations and Sam Dalton had a game changing bases loaded two-out catch in right field in the third inning and drove home a big run with a screaming single to right field in the fourth inning.
"Sam Dalton made an outstanding catch in right field and number eleven, little Mousey, all 50 pounds soaking wet is nothing but a fighter!" Gumby exclaimed.
He added, "This is me and Mad Dog's third trip to the State and I hope the third time will be the charm for both of us."
In the post-game interview, the nine year old Medley said, "This feels good, it is my first time to the State and it feels great. I knew it was over with two outs in the last inning when the ball was hit to Mad Dog. I just headed to the dugout because I just knew she would catch it."
The girls will begin play at the State Tournament in Bartlett, TN at Deerwood Park on July 14.