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Softball Tops Stratford 5-4 to Advance to Region 7 Tournament Championship Game

MACON, Ga. – For the second time in three years, the First Presbyterian Day School Lady Vikings (25-3, 10-0 reg. 7-A) are going to the GHSA Class-A Region 7 Tournament Championship game.

The Lady Vikings bested arch-rival Stratford Academy (19-5, 5-5 Reg. 7-A) 5-4 in thrilling fashion on Wednesday night, Oct. 5, at the FPD Softball Complex.

FPD, winners of 17 straight, will now take on the GMC Prep Lady Bulldogs (21-3, 11-0 Reg. 7-A) in the championship game on Thursday, Oct. 6 at 6 p.m.

GMC knocked off Tattnall Square 3-0 to advance.

In Wednesday’s thriller against Stratford, the Lady Viking bats went to work in the third after two scoreless innings.

Sadie Frame led off the inning with a home run to left field to give the Lady Vikings a 1-0 lead.

Later in the inning, Allie Parkerson drilled a pitch from Tori Dover over the left field wall, her sixth home run in the last three games and 14th of the year, to stake FPD to a 3-0 advantage.

Carli Sutton closed out the inning with a RBI single to plate Amanda Evans for what seemed to be a commanding 4-0 lead.

But the Eaglettes swung right back.

In the top of the fourth, Stratford cut FPD’s lead in half on back-t0-back RBI singles by Dover and Evans McCook.

Then, in the top of the fifth, the Eaglettes tied the game on a Dover double off the left-center field wall to score Mary Elaine Mitchell and Autumn Land to make it a 4-4 contest.

The Lady Vikings responded quickly.

In the bottom half of the fifth and with two outs, Sutton slapped an opposite field single to right field to plate Evans again for a 5-4 lead.

The base knock would prove to be the game-winning hit.

FPD pitcher Karsen Ochs retired the Eaglettes in order in the sixth, but in the top of the seventh, Stratford attempted to rally.

Mitchell led off the inning with fly out to Gracie Slade in left field, followed by a Jenny Belle Butler single.

Land hit into a fielder’s choice as the FPD defense forced Butler out at second for the second out of the inning.

Hannah Griffin singled to put Land at third and runners on the corners with two down.

Alyssa Orona was Stratford’s final hope, but Ochs struck her out swinging to end the game to vault FPD into Wednesday’s title game.

Ochs (15-1) picked up the win in the circle for the Lady Vikings and totaled 12 strikeouts. Dover (15-5) was charged with the loss for Stratford.

With the win, the Lady Vikings have defeated Stratford three times in the 2016 season and lead the overall GHSA series 7-1.

The Lady Vikings will quickly shift their focus to the Lady Bulldogs of GMC Prep for Thursday’s championship game.

FPD is no. 1 in the GHSA Class-A Private Power Ratings while GMC Prep is no. 2 in Class-A Public.

FPD is ranked no. 1 in the SCORE Atlanta and AJC Polls. GMC Prep is no. 2 in both.

The Lady Bulldogs lead the overall series against the Lady Vikings 7-1.

FPD fell in the Region 7 Tournament Championship game to the Lady Bulldogs 3-2 back on Oct. 10, 2013.

The following year, the Lady Vikings won the region crown over Tattnall Square 4-3.

FPD also claimed the Region Championship in 2011 and 2012 with victories over Glascock County.

First pitch on Thursday night is slated for 6 p.m. at the FPD Softball Complex.

The First Presbyterian Day School Department of Athletics strives to build the student athlete both in the playing arena and the classroom while upholding the school’s mission statement to educate and equip students to change the world for God’s glory. For more information, visit www.fpdvikings.com and sign up for up-to-the-minute news and scores by visiting www.twitter.com/FPDVikingSports.

BOX SCORE:

FPD 5, STRATFORD 4

SAE 000-220-0 — 4-7-0
FPD 004-010-x — 5-7-1

WP: Karsen Ochs (15-1). LP: Tori Dover (15-5).

2B: Stratford – Dover.

HR: FPD – Sadie Frame, Allie Parkerson.

Game notes: FPD advances to the GHSA Class-A Region 7 Championship game against GMC Prep … Carli Sutton hit the game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the fifth to score Amanda Evans and finished the game 2-for-3 with two RBI’s … Parkerson was 1-for-3 with two RBI’s … Dover was 2-for-3 with three RBI’s for Stratford … Ochs struck out 12 batters … FPD has won 17 straight games.

Records: FPD 25-3, 10-0 Reg. 7-A; Stratford 19-5, 5-5 Reg. 7-A.

Next: GMC Prep at FPD, 6 p.m., Thursday.

POST-GAME VIDEOS:

Sadie Frame and Allie Parkerson:

Karsen Ochs: