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Maplesville softball team wins Verbena Tournament

By Zachary Seifter/ Staff Writer

The Maplesville High School softball team reeled off five straight victories on Feb. 26 and Feb. 27 to win the Verbena softball tournament.

The wins were a result of excellent pitching supported by some terrific hitting from the Lady Devils.

In the tournament, Maplesville knocked off Verbena High School in the first game by a score of 4-3, then beat Billingsley High School 23-1, Montevallo High School 11-3, Verbena again 5-0 and Montevallo again 3-2. The wins kept Maplesville’s undefeated record intact.

Lexi Smith was the starting pitcher in the opening match for Maplesville against Verbena. She also pitched two games the next day against Montevallo and Verbena again, notching an impressive shutout win in the second match that saw her give up just five hits while striking out four batters.

Anna Grace Small pitched the other two games against Billingsley and Montevallo in the final, giving up just three combined runs. She struggled out the gate in the tournament final, giving up two runs to Montevallo in the first inning. She was able to overcome the rough start however, and lead Maplesville to victory.

“She [Lexi Smith] was very good at hitting her spots, hitting the corners on the pitches I called, keeping it down in the zone,” Maplesville head coach Clark Whatley said. “Anna Grace, this is her first year, she transferred in from another school and she did the same thing. [She] hit her spots real good, got a great changeup and hit the corners, and staying down in the zone also.”

While Maplesville can certainly credit its pitchers for the victories, the Lady Devils scored a combined 51 runs in the five games, an average of over 10 runs per game.

“All the way down the lineup the girls were hitting, that’s why we were so successful in scoring runs,” Whatley said.

Maplesville will look to carry that success to their next match as they have little time to rest before facing Thorsby on March 2 at 4:30 p.m. It will be the first of two times that the teams will meet this season.