One day after she set a state tournament record for strikeouts in a game with 20, Ashton Edwards pitched Richland past Gordonsville again 2-0, this time in the Class A championship game.
Edwards (27-3) struck out seven on Friday and was one out away from a no-hitter. She also added a two-run single in the third.
The win gives Richland (30-10-1) its first state championship in softball since 1979 when Annette Edwards, Ashton’s mother and coach of the Lady Raiders, helped lead the second team in the high school’s existence to the state title.
“It’s really exciting because we share a state championship,” Ashton said.
Edwards walked two of the first three Tigerettes before striking out Briona Inman and Allyson West to end the threat.
Edwards did not allow another runner until Allyson West singled to right.
“We had some chances, but couldn’t capitalize,” Gordonsville coach Jonathan Bush said.
The Lady Raiders struck in the third when Merrianne Patterson reached on a bunt single with two outs. She then stole second and third. Taylor Parker walked and took second. Edwards singled in both.
“I was just trying to make contact and get a base hit to score a run,” Ashton Edwards said.
Gordonsville’s Cori Jennings (23-4), a Chattanooga signee, took the loss in both games against Richland. Jennings pitched six innings, allowed two hits, walked two and struck out seven.
Gordonsville 2, Whitwell 1: Jennings got her second wind for Gordonsville, working out of a jam in the eighth inning in an elimination game.
Jennings, a junior lefthander who has committed to Chattanooga, helped break a 1-1 tie in the top of the eighth with a leadoff double. After moving to third on a Shelby West sacrifice, Jennings scored on Jacqueline Crawford’s single.
In the bottom of the inning, Jennings faced down a bases-loaded, one-out situation. She got a force at home and a groundout to first.
“She’s 24-3 and somebody we’ve ridden all year,” Gordonsville coach Jonathan Bush said. “A game like this as it gets to the eighth inning and you’re going to get tired at the end. Plus it was her fourth game in four days.”
Gordonsville took a 1-0 lead in the fifth as Jami Chamberlain scored on Jessica Ragsdale’s squeeze bunt. Whitwell (25-17) tied the game in the bottom of the inning, taking advantage of a pair of Jennings walks to set up a KayeAnn Patton RBI single.
Over the sixth and seventh innings, the teams combined to strand five runners.