Zion Chapel wins Jonah McWaters Softball Tournament

Published 9:23 am Monday, February 26, 2024

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The Zion Chapel Lady Rebels (9-0) remain undefeated in 2024 after winning their second tournament championship of the new season, taking the Jonah McWaters Softball Tournament in Troy this weekend.

Zion Chapel swept its way to the tournament crown, defeating Kinston, Carroll and Pike Lib. In the opening round, the Lady Rebs took care of Kinston by a score of 5-1 on Feb. 23. In the bottom of the third inning, Kennedy Hussey blasted a three-run home run for the Lady Rebels, which was too much for the Lady Dawgs to overcome.

Hussey’s homer was one of just two hits the Lady Rebels were able to muster in the defensive battle. Riley Bannin earned the other. Bannin also pitched all four innings and struck out eight batters, while giving up three hits and one earned run.

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Next, the Lady Rebels thrashed Class 5A Carroll by a score of 14-2 on Feb. 24. The Lady Rebs scored 10 runs in the third inning alone. Sydney Boothe blasted a solo home run, while Amber Kidd went 3-for-3 at the plate with a double and two RBIs. Hussey went 2-for-3 with a triple, two RBIs and two runs. Madison Meeks also scored two runs.

Boothe pitched all four innings and mowed down eight batters, while giving up two hits and no earned runs.

Later on Feb. 24, Zion Chapel topped Pike Lib by a score of 15-7 in the semifinals. Pike Lib opened things up by scoring five runs in the top of the first, but Zion Chapel responded by scoring four runs in the bottom of the inning. Pike Lib then took a 7-4 lead into the third inning only for Zion Chapel to score 11 unanswered runs.

Bannin went 4-for-4 at the plate with two RBIs and three runs, while Kidd went 3-for-4 with two doubles and four RBIs. Hussey also earned a double and two RBIs, while Boothe went 3-for-3 with two RBIs, a double and two runs. Shea Wambles went 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs.

Boothe pitched three innings and fanned five batters, while giving up three hits and no earned runs. Bannin pitched one inning and struck out a pair of batters along with giving up four hits and five earned runs.

For Pike Lib, Gracie Smith went 2-for-3 with two runs, while Mary Holland Stephens went 2-for-3 with a run and Haylie Brown went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a run. Alissa Barron scored two runs. Barron also pitched three and 1/3 innings and struck out three batters.

Zion Chapel rematched Kinston in the championship round and dominated its way to a 12-2 championship win. It was Wambles turn to go yard as she blasted an inside-the-park grand slam. Boothe went 2-for-3 at the plate with a pair of doubles and an RBI, while Kidd went 2-for-4 and Meeks hit a double. Boothe struck out six batters in four innings and gave up three hits with no runs, while Bannin struck out three batters and gave up three hits and no earned runs in two innings pitched.

In other tournament action, Pike Lib lost to Kinston in the opening round on Feb 23 by a score of 3-1. Barron struck out three batters in three innings pitched and Allie Booth scored the lone Lady Patriot run.

In the next round, Pike Lib fell to 5A Carroll by a score of 7-6. Pike Lib led 6-5 going into the fourth inning but Carroll scored two final runs in the bottom of the fourth to take the win. Julianne Meyer led Pike at the plate, going 2-for-2 with a triple, one RBI and two runs, while Booth went 2-for-3 with a double and a run. Brown also went 2-for-3 with a double and two runs.

Stephens struck out six batters and gave up seven hits with five earned runs in three innings pitched. Barron struck out one batter and gave up one hit and no earned runs in her inning in the circle.