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Local Roundup: Portal girls punch ticket the hard way

    ALAMO — The Portal Panthers are hosting the girls Region 3-A tournament for the first time, but before the Lady Panthers could take to the home floor, they had to play in.
    Portal defeated Johnson County on the campus of Wheeler County in Alamo Saturday to advance to the next round of the region tournament.
    The Lady Panthers face Savannah Christian (17-5, 7-3 Region 3A-A) today at home at 5:30 p.m.
    The winner will play Montgomery County Thursday at 5:30 p.m. for a trip to the GHSA Class A state playoffs.

Eagles top Hampton
    The Georgia Southern men’s tennis team (3-2) started the day winning the doubles point over Hampton (1-2) and cruised to a final score of 6-1 Sunday afternoon at the Hanner Tennis Complex. The victory kept the Eagles undefeated at home.
    The Eagles triumphed over the Pirates for the fourth consecutive season, but it was the first win over Hampton for first-year coach Nick Zieziula.
    The Eagles will be on the road for their next three matches against South Carolina State, North Florida and Mercer before returning home Sunday, Feb. 27, to face Florida A&M.

Metter gets past Wheeler County
    MILLEN — The Metter Tigers won 78-47 over Wheeler County to advance to the second round of the Region 3-A Tournament Monday at Jenkins County.
    Devin Byrd led the scoring with 24 points. Michael Edwards added 15 and Devin Dekle scored 14.
    The Tigers will face Portal Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. in Millen. The winner will earn a bid to the GHSA Class A state playoffs.

All-Region 3-AA team named
    Two Southeast Bulloch Lady Yellow Jackets and two Screven County Lady Gamecocks received 2011 All-Region 3-AA honors.
    First-team honors went to Screven's Bria Lonon and SEB's Crystel Mikell and Casmeyona Austin of SCHS and Hannah Denmark of SEB were named second team.

Lady Gamecocks win season opener
    SAVANNAH — The Screven County Lady Gamecocks swept Savannah Country Day 5-0 in the first tennis match of the season Monday.
    Singles matches were won by Sydnee Weaver (7-5, 6-4), Lauren Thomas (6-0, 7-6 [7-4]) and Kelsey Forehand (6-0, 6-1).
    Evan Blackburn and Lovey Sheppard won their doubles match 6-4, 6-0 and Lauren Bazemore and Mallory Boswell won their doubles match 6-2, 6-2.
    The Savannah Country Day boys defeated Screven 5-0.
    Screven is scheduled to play its home opener Wednesday against Jefferson County.
GSU softball splits in tourney
    Georgia Southern softball (2-2) earned a two-game split on Sunday afternoon at Eagle Field as the Eagles fell to Radford, 4-3, before defeating Mercer, 3-2, in the final game of the SpringHill Suites Eagle Classic.
    Against Mercer in the win, a fifth-inning error by Hanna Ennis allowed the Bears to tie the game. An inning later, she atoned with a first-pitch home run which helped the Eagles close the tournament with a victory.
    The Eagles jumped out to a 2-0 lead on the Bears in the second inning.
    The Bears cut the Eagles’ lead in half in the fourth inning after McKenzie Woody reached on Ennis’ error that brought Anna Johnson home. Mercer tied the game in the fifth inning with a single by Krista Kennedy to plate Amanda Santa Maria.
    Georgia Southern opened action Sunday with a 4-3 loss against Radford.
    Georgia Southern returns to action Wednesday for a doubleheader against in-state rival Georgia State in Atlanta. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. with the second game scheduled at 5 p.m.

Lady Eagles sweep Hampton
    The Georgia Southern Lady Eagles' Tennis team (2-0) shut out Hampton (1-2) with a 7-0 win at the Hanner Tennis Complex on Sunday.
    The early-morning win marks the first time the Eagles competed at all six singles and three doubles spots.
    Georgia Southern will hit the road to play three teams in the Atlanta area next weekend with Kennesaw State and Savannah State on deck for Saturday and Georgia State on Sunday. The Eagles play five matches on the road before a return home for non-conference play March 9 and 10 against Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson.

    If you have a score to report, please call the Statesboro Herald sports desk at (912) 489-9408.

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