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Girls fall one game short of state title




Fleming-Neon made its mark but came up one game short of the Junior League State Softball Tournament title last week at Charlie Adkins Field in Paintsville. The Fleming-Neon 13- and 14-year-old all-stars had already been stricken with flulike symptoms, so a second-place state tourney trophy didn’t seem so bad after all was said and done. The flu-like factors combined with unbeatable eventual champion Adair County, but the Letcher County team had its earlier tournament victory over Belfry for the District Seven title on which to hang its hat.

Fleming-Neon fell to Adair County 12-3 during the state championship game after wins over Winchester, Fleming County and Belfry during the state tourney.

The Fleming-Neon 13- and 14-year-old all-stars topped Belfry with two wins earlier for the District Seven Junior League title, 15-2 and 17-2, but both the district winner and the runner-up advanced to the state tournament at Paintsville.

During the state tournament, Fleming-Neon opened with its only other loss, also to Adair County, 12-4. Fleming-Neon then beat Winchester 26-1, topped Fleming-County 12-11 and beat Belfry 17-12 before the championship game defeat and runner-up finish.

Tournament host Dave Wheeler said the Fleming-Neon all-stars advanced further than any other local softball all-star team in the history of the tournament.

Adair County 12

Fleming-Neon

Adair County took control with several runs and ended Fleming-Neon’s hopes of a state championship, although the runner up trophy may make the team learn even more in the long run, according to Coach Webb.

Brooke Webb had 10 strikeouts but was plagued with walks and took the loss. Thurman had 12 strikeouts of her own for Adair County and got the win.

Hilary Brashear, Leshia Fleming, Brooke Webb crossed the plate for Fleming-Neon’s three runs early in the game. Things were close until Adair County took control with four runs during the fifth inning and finished with the state title while Fleming-Neon was left with the runner-up trophy.

Fleming-Neon 17

Belfry 12

Emily Walker picked up the win against Belfry while teammates Sierra Kiser and Leshia Fleming combined for three quality innings and picked up the save. Kiser and Fleming tossing the final innings to allow aces Brooke Webb and Walker to toss during the championship game.

Hall went 6-for-6 from the plate, Walker was 5-for-7, Brashear 5-for-6, Meade, Kiser and Brooke Webb each went 4- for-6, Fleming was 3-for-6 while Jessica Mullins and Stacie Collins both went 3-for-6.

Fleming-Neon 12

Fleming County 11

Fleming-Neon jumped ahead 9-4 but gave up six runs in the fifth inning and another in the sixth to trial 11-9. Fleming- Neon’s Walker doubled in Mullins for the tie and on the next pitch Walker stole third base and then scored the gamewinning run on an overthrow to third trying to keep the speedster close to the bag. Brashear went 5-for-5 during the win. Brooke Webb had eight strikeouts but walked 13 before Walker came in for the close and got the win.

Fleming-Neon 26

Winchester 1

Brooke Webb got the win with 10 strikeouts and Walker closed the game with two strikeouts of the three batters she faced, but the defense was the star of this game, according to Coach Webb. Brooke Webb helped herself going 5-for-5 from the plate while Brashear, Fleming and Mullins each went 4-for-5 (including a home run from Brashear), Walker and Hall went 4-for-6, Kiser and Meade both went 3-for-5 and Stacia Collins was also 3-for-5 with two outstanding catches in deep left field.

Adair County 12

Fleming-Neon 4

Brooke Webb retired her first nine batters and had 10 strikeouts in only four innings but was the losing pitcher in the first game of the state tourney. Coach Webb said he had to pull his daughter after only four innings because state tournament rules allow only pitchers with less than four innings’ work to throw again the next night.

Walker entered the contest as the closer and allowed only one run. Brashear was outstanding behind the plate and went 4-for-4 with three runs scored. Walker scored the other run and Fleming had a double.

During the District Seven tournament, Fleming-Neon and Belfry battled it out for the rights to the district crown and Fleming-Neon came away with the title but the Belfry season didn’t end there despite defeats of 15-2 and 17-2.

Brooke Webb got the first win when the fireballer retired the first nine batters she faced and had a total of 10 strikeouts against Belfry before she was replaced. Walker came on in relief and took control of the mound for the save during the five-inning win, 15-2.

Walker started the second game and picked up the win while Webb came on in relief for the save during the 17-2 victory against Belfry . Brashears ended the game with a rocket throw from her catcher position to second base and got the runner for the last out during the fifth and final inning.

Belfry finished as district runner up.


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