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Fastpitch team catches fire

  • Thursday, June 26, 2014

Provided The Carolina Fire fastpitch softball team has earned a berth to the 18U ASA Nationals. Team members are (from left, bottom row) Kayli Mile (Stratford), Morgan Howard (Wando), Camryn Alverson (Ashley Ridge), Lexi Thompson (West Ashley), Cierra Robinson (Spring Valley); (top row) Summer Jenkins (Summerville), Canyon Crosby (Colleton County), Haley Elkins (Dutch Fork), Faythe Goins (Hammond), Annamarie Gluhosky (Summerville), Tay Powell (Summerville), Taylor Belfiore (Summerville) and Ana Michelle Brown (Beaufort).

The Carolina Fire 18U fastpitch softball team based out of Summerville won the ASA National Qualifier held in Spartanburg last weekend.

The Fire went undefeated in the tournament to earn a berth to 18U ASA Nationals to be hosted in Montgomery, Ala. This summer marks the second consecutive year the team has advanced to Nationals. Last year the Fire earned an at-large berth and competed in the Nationals held in Virginia.

In Spartanburg, the girls battled heat, a solid 12-team field and exhaustion the first day. The team arrived at the field 8 a.m. Saturday to prepare for a full day of competition.

Four games later, the Fire packed up their gear for the evening and left at 10 p.m. knowing they could secure the tournament championship the next day with two victories.

“Both games Sunday were nail biters and we won in dramatic fashion,” Carolina Fire coach Tony Mendez said.

In the semi-final game, Dutch Fork’s Haley Elkins hit an RBI double with two outs to plate Hammond’s Faythe Goins from first for the game-winning run.

Then in a back-and-forth championship game, two Summerville pitchers combined to lead the Fire to the championship.

Ashley Ridge’s Camryn Alverson picked up the win in relief and Summerville’s Summer Jenkins closed the door in the International Tiebreaker.

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