Darlings finish as national runner-up at World Series

By Staff
Hartselle American earns sportsmanship award
Staff Reports, Hartselle Enquirer
The Hartselle American Darlings fell one win short of a Dixie World Series championship last week, losing a pair of games to Pineville (La.) in the championship round July 25 in West Stanly, N.C.
Hartselle finished as the winners bracket champion with a 7-3 victory over Florida on July 24, putting the Darlings into the championship with an undefeated 4-0 record. On July 23, Hartselle defeated Louisiana 5-4 to send them to the losers bracket.
The two teams faced off again July 25 with Hartselle needing to win just one game to finish as the World Series champion. But the night belonged to the Louisiana All-Stars, who won the first game 7-3 and took the second by a score of 10-7.
In Game 1, Louisiana got off to a fast start early by scoring five runs in the first inning. Louisiana added a run in the third inning to go ahead 6-0 but Hartselle responded in the bottom of the inning to make it 6-3.
Unfortunately, that would be as close as Hartselle's Darlings would get.
Game 2 featured another quick start by the Louisiana team, who put up three runs in the top of the first inning. Hartselle responded with a run in the bottom of the inning but Louisiana's offense continued to click and they took the lead 6-1 heading into the fourth inning as Hartselle's chances looked dashed.
But the Darlings continued to fight, sending 10 batters to the plate in the bottom of the third and scoring six runs to take a 7-6 lead heading into the deciding fifth inning.
It was not meant to be, however, as Louisiana scored four runs in the top of the fifth inning and held Hartselle scoreless in the bottom of the inning to earn the championship title.
Hartselle's team didn't leave North Carolina empty-handed, however, as the Darlings were awarded the James E. "Obie" Evans Sportsmanship Award.
The members of the 2007 Hartselle American Darlings All-Stars are Brooklyn Wallace, Haley Mitchell, Reagan Martin, Courtney Blackwood, Kenzie Parker, Reagan Bowling, Gracie Poe, Callie Partlow, Megan Zuck, LaNinya Wiggins, Rose Braun and Tori Blaylock. Coaches are Danny Ikard (manager) and Derek Parker, Brian Wallace and Tim Martin.

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