The Southeast Bulloch Yellow Jackets continued to roll right along though the state tournament as they swept Pace Academy Wednesday evening winning game one 8-0, and then taking the nite cap 16-0 as they advance to Columbus for the elite eight for the first time since 2016 and the seventh time in school history.
“I feel like we made a real statement tonight against a good team,” said Southeast Bulloch coach Aimee Civalier. “Alana pitched great, and we really got the bats going, particularly in the second game. I’m so proud of these girls, we worked very hard for this.”
The Jackets took game one 8-0 behind the pitching of Alana Barnard, and some timely hitting. Barnard had nine strikeouts and allowed only one hit through five innings, while Megan Lee had a home run and a pair of RBI’s and Shylah Thames finished things off with a two run single in the bottom of the fifth.
Lee started the scoring for the Jackets with a towering home run in the bottom of the second to give Southeast Bulloch a 1-0 lead. Shylah Thames added an RBI on a bloop single to right to make it 2-0 Yellow Jackets.
Gracie Burgin kept the scoring ging in the third as she singled down the line in left plating Delanie Thames for a 3-0 lead. Lee added another RBI on a single to center to give Southeast a 4-0 lead.
The Jackets put things away in the fifth as they scored four runs. Makiney Fields started the scoring with a two-run single to center for a 6-0 Jacket lead. Shylah Thames then ended the game with the bases loaded single to right which brought in two runs as the Jackets won by the run rule of 8-0.
In game two Barnard remained solid on the mound, and the Jackets had a pair of three-run homers by Lee and Delanie Thames. Southeast Bulloch started the scoring in the top of the first as Barnard hit a sacrifice fly, Lee then brought in a run on a fielder's choice for a 2-0 Jacket lead.
Southeast added five runs in the second to pull away. Maddie Grams began the scoring in the second with an RBI double to center. Mallory Lewis then came through with a two-run single into right to make it 5-0. Later with runners on second and third Lee hit a shot to short that was bobbled, allowing both runners to score for a 7-0 lead.
The Jackets put things away for good in the third. Delanie Thames started the fireworks with a three-run blast to straightaway centerfield to make it 10-0. Lee then hit another towering shot to left for a 13-0 Southeast Bulloch lead. They’d go on to tack on three more runs in the fourth to win 16-0.
“I told these girls since the beginning of the year top to bottom offense and defense I don’t think we have any real weaknesses,” Civalier said. “We are happy to go to Columbus, but we are not just happy to get there, we expect to make a run at the title.”
The state elite eight gets underway next Thursday in Columbus.