The Picayune softball team topped Long Beach 5-4 in Game 3 Monday night to clinch a spot in the Class 5A state title series.
Alyssa Pinero came up with a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh inning to send the Maroon Tide to Ridgeland. Picayune will play Neshoba Central at 11 a.m. on Thursday in Game 1.
After Picayune rolled to a 15-2 win in Game 1, Long Beach rebounded with a 6-5 win in Game 2 to force a decisive Game 3. Long Beach held onto the 1-run lead after Picayune loaded the bases with none out in the bottom of the seventh.
Picayune (22-8-1) jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the fifth inning in Game 3 and held on for the series-clinching victory.
The Long Beach season came to a close with a record of 17-16.
North Pike tops East Central: The East Central softball season came to a end in the Class 4A South State finals Monday night.
East Central (26-8) forced a Game 3 with a 9-8 victory in the first game on Monday, but fell short, 5-2, in the second game of the day.
“We had one bad inning,” East Central coach Kyle Long said. “My pitcher pitched really good. We had a bad inning, made a couple of mistakes on defense. Their pitcher was really good, never got tired. We couldn’t get it going offensively.”
Presleigh Cumbest was the winning pitcher for East Central in the first game of the day, throwing 4 innings. Alexis Laughlin had two hits and score two runs in the game. Ashlyn Vice also had a big two-run double in the seventh inning.
Taylor Lawson pitched all seven innings in Game 3 for East Central.