MAGEE, Miss. — The Pearl River Lady Wildcats have been on a tear as of late and Monday was no different as PRCC bested Northeast 8-7 in their second game in the MACJC Tournament.
With the win, coupled with a meeting in the finals against Itawamba, PRCC secured the right to host the upcoming Region XXIII Tournament — a first in the program's history. The team will also play for its first state championship since winning the 2010 title.
"This team is relentless," PRCC coach Leigh White said. "They're getting on the field and just fighting it out and they play together. That game was so back and forth that we could have gotten down but we didn't."
The tournament was first delayed and then relocated to the Magee Sportsplex due to inclement weather in Ellisville.
Northeast (37-14 overall), which has been nationally ranked this season and is currently receiving votes in the NJCAA poll, got the scoring started in the top of the second hitting a two-run double with two outs to grab a 2-0 lead.
The Lady Wildcats (27-19) immediately responded in the bottom of the second inning when Alyssa Pinero (Picayune) hit an RBI single to plate the first run for PRCC.
Hannah Rasberry (Lucedale; George County) then gave the Lady Wildcats the lead with a two-run single to give the Lady Wildcats a 3-2 lead.
Northeast retook the lead in the top of the third inning, plating three runs to take a 5-3 lead, but PRCC wasn't down for long.
Northeast retook the lead with a solo shot in the top of the fifth inning to take a 6-5 lead.
The Lady Wildcats responded in the bottom of the fifth when Corkern hit an RBI single and Pinero hit a sac fly to give the Lady Wildcats a 7-6 lead.
Northeast again tied the game up in the top of the sixth scoring on a wild pitch to make it a 7-7 contest.
Rasberry scored the last run of the game in the bottom of the sixth inning, hitting a solo home run over the center field wall to give PRCC a decisive 8-7 advantage.
"Hannah got up there and had two strikes and just hit it out," White said. "She did great."
LEADING THE WAY
Corkern and Rasberry tied for the team lead in hits with two each while Rasberry led the team in RBIs with three.
Corkern and Pinero also drove in two runs.
Rylee Swilley (Kiln; Hancock) got the start for the Lady Wildcats in the circle.
Swilley threw 2 2/3 innings, allowing four hits, three walks and five runs.
"Everybody has doubted us," Swilley said. "It was easy to play with all the girls behind me. They did a great job at the plate and it's my job to be there and help produce outs."
Dallas Blaker (Bay St. Louis; Our Lady Academy) finished the game for the Lady Wildcats.
The Belhaven signee threw 4 1/3 innings, allowing one earned run on two hits.
"Dallas got out there and picked up where Rylee left off," White said. "She kept them off balance and that was our plan."
First pitch against ICC in Magee is set for 7:30 p.m. The game will be streamed on LetsGoICCTV.com.