NHS stays focused with win

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 5, 1999

Natchez High kept its game sharp Tuesday as the Lady Bulldogs defeated Amite County 15-5 at the Natchez Girls Softball Complex.

The Lady Bulldogs (9-11) clinched the Region 3-5A last week and await the second place team out of the Gulf Coast in a first round playoff series to be held here Oct. 16.

The teams in contention are Long Beach, Harrison Central and Hattiesburg.

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&uot;We needed this kind of effort,&uot; said Natchez High coach Sue Johnson. &uot;This team is coming together at the right time.&uot;

Johnson’s concern is well founded. The Lady Bulldogs have been to the state playoffs 14 straight years, but have not gotten past the first round.

The last three years, Natchez High won its division and hosted a second place team, but lost out.

&uot;I think this team is playing as well, if not better than any team we’ve had here,&uot; Johnson said. &uot;It’s better to be hot at this time of the year than at the beginning. We needed to win this one and to win Thursday (at home against Vicksburg) to have some momentum going into the playoffs.&uot;

Natchez does not have a game next week.

&uot;I don’t think that’s going to hurt us,&uot; Johnson said. &uot;We’ll be able to work on some things and get some rest.&uot;

The Lady Bulldogs had 27 hits Tuesday night.

Leading barrage with four hits each were Sherrelle Fizgerald and Rainne McPhate. Fitzgerald doubled. McPhate was returning from a foot injury.

Leslie Patrick had a home run and two singles, while Latoya Patterson singled three times. Mable Green contributed a double and two singles.

Kelly Fuller added a home run, double and single, while Chrystal Sylvester had a triple and home run.

Krystal Brown doubled, while Rosetta Ikard and Brandy Jones both singled.