COLUMBUS, Ga. — Dana Mull won't single out one championship as more special than another, but Gordon Lee's latest GHSA Class A state softball title will no doubt be a reference point for future Lady Trojans teams.
The Lady Trojans (35-4) won three games Saturday to win their third consecutive title and fourth overall under Mull. They began the day with a 9-2 win over Mount Zion to reach the title round against Georgia Military College Prep, the team that put them in the losers bracket Friday.
Gordon Lee forced a deciding game with a 6-4 win, then used the shutout pitching of its lone senior, Kalei Kimbrell, to win the clincher, 3-0.
"It feels good to do it this way," said Mull, whose first three titles were done in straight victory fashion. "I told the girls that we've been in the situation they were in after losing that first game on Saturday, and it's tough to come back and play another one. Those were hard-fought games and we had to earn them."
In the first win over GMCP, Tori McElhaney and Ashley McDonald had two-run singles in the first two innings for a 4-0 lead. GMCP rallied on Sutton Long's two-run homer in the fourth, but Kimbrell took over the pitching in the seventh to earn the save for starter Emily Armour.
Kimbrell fought through some early troubles in the deciding game, stranding two runners in each of the first three innings, but she was in control the rest of the way to end her career in style. Aggressive baserunning early helped get a 2-0 lead in the second inning, when Reagan Brown and Jordyn Hamill had RBIs.
"It means so much," said Kimbrell, a future Shorter University player. "It's the most awesome way to go out, especially to come out of the losers bracket to do it. They were a great team, and to beat them twice today was tough."
Lindsey Young is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who started work at the Chattanooga News-Free Press 24 years ago. He covers the Northwest Georgia prep beat and NASCAR. Lindsey’s hometown is Ringgold, Ga., and he graduated from Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School. He received an associate’s degree from Dalton Junior College (now Dalton State) and a bachelor’s degree in communications from UTC. He has won several writing awards, including two Tennessee Sports ...