MADISON, Miss. After taking Game 1 of the MHSAA Class II state championship series 10-2 on Saturday, Neshoba Central had a 5-0 lead going into the top of the fifth in Game 2.
Wayne County’s offense had been silent for most of the second game but came alive at the perfect moment. The Lady War Eagles put ball to bat and produced several hard-hitting, scoring plays to tie the game 5-5 going into the bottom of the fifth.
The Lady Rockets had experience with moments like this, which is no secret since the program has seven state titles under its belt. Instead of folding under pressure, Neshoba Central would respond with optimism.
With two outs in the bottom of the fifth, Jayda Ben singled on a fly ball to right field. Next play, Reese Page advanced Ben to second with a single of her own. An error in the outfield allowed Ben to score all the way from second, allowing Neshoba Central to take a 6-5 lead.
The Lady Rockets then held Wayne County scoreless in the sixth and seventh to secure the win and claim their eighth-straight slow-pitch title.
"This group has worked extremely hard," Head Coach Trae Embry said. "From where we were at the beginning of this year, to no seniors, this championship is just a testament to their hard work."
Sophomore outfielder Tenly Grisham reflected back on the three-game semifinal matchup between Newton County and the strength of her team to win their eighth-straight title.
"We are a very hardworking team," Grisham said. "Battling three games against Newton County was tough but that shows how much fight we had this year and how much we wanted it."