WARNER ROBINS, Ga. — Phenix City didn’t want to go home without a win.
And Sunday, it took care of that issue. Getting strong pitching from Whitley Pope, Haley Deaton, and Katie Webb, Phenix City took a hard-earned 2-1 win over Tennessee in a consolation game. Phenix City scored two runs in the third inning and made it hold up by playing outstanding defense and hold the hard-hitting Tennessee team to only five hits in the game.
“I’m glad for the girls,” Phenix City manager Keith Corbett said. “We were up against a very good team in Tennessee. We ended up having to manufacture a few runs and played very good defense. We cam out here with the idea just to have fun, and we threw two 11-year-old pitchers. We wanted to give them the experience in case they got to do this again next year.”
Phenix City went 0-3 in pool play in the Little League Softball Southeastern Region Tournament but left with a better feeling after Sunday’s win.
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Phenix City went home impressed by the Little League Southeast Park, which hosted the regional for the first time.
“I have coached in three Southeast regionals, and this is an absolute beautiful facility,” Corbett said. “I have had a great time, and besides some small problems, we have had a great time. Obviously we would have liked to be playing in the semifinals, but it just didn’t work out that way.”
Tennessee took a 1-0 lead on a hit by Rachel Vittetoe that scored Abby Harrison in the second, but Phenix City used hits by Taylor Corbett, Webb, and Pope to get its runs in the third. Tennessee did not threaten until the top of the sixth when it loaded the bases with two outs, but Webb got leadoff hitter Taylor Campbell to hit a ground ball right back to her, giving Phenix City the win.
“We had a great time,” Taylor Corbett said. “We did this last year and had the same results, but I think this was a better experience. We really loved playing here, and all the people were really nice to us. Warner Robins really put on a great tournament.”
Michaela Dean, also a member of last year’s team, echoed Taylor Corbett’s sentiments.
“The only thing that could have made it a better experience was to win more games,” Dean said.
“We all had a great time, and this place is really just amazing. It is the nicest place I have ever played at, and it is a great feeling playing in front of so many people.
“It’s just something I will never forget.”