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Vidalia girls pull off miracle comeback Monday

PINEVILLE, La. — Even with the odds stacked heavily against them, the Vidalia 13- to 16-year-olds All-Stars just wouldn’t be denied.

Trailing 9-5 and down to their final out in the top of the seventh, Vidalia pulled off the comeback of a lifetime. The Vidalia All-Stars scored five runs, taking a 10-9 lead against Texas East in the Little League Regional elimination round Monday.

Vidalia pitcher Ellen Bairnsfather would go on to pitch a scoreless bottom of the sixth to secure the win. Rut Horne, Vidalia 13- and 16-year-old softball coach, said the feat his players’ pulled off was nothing short of incredible.

“It’s probably the most exciting comeback I’ve ever been around. They were down 9-4 going into that inning, got down to two outs (after scoring one run), and still won it 10-9,” Horne said.

“With two outs and being down four, you wouldn’t give yourself (that big) of a chance. I told the girls I wouldn’t have given them two dead flies for their chances, but they’ve been here before. This is their third go at it.”

After Keke Collins grounded out to the shortstop at the start of the seventh, Savannah Johnston got an infield hit. Bairnsfather then tripled in Johnston, and scored on a groundout by Ginny Daggett.

Paige Bryan followed up with a single, and Allison Hauer and Bailey New both walked to load the bases. Taylor Morace then drove in two runs with a double, making it 9-7 Texas East.

Lay Lay Griffin got the game-winning hit, lining a ball over the first baseman’s head to drive in two more runs.

Bairnsfather, who came in relief in the fifth inning, got the win for Vidalia.

Vidalia scored its first two runs in the second inning, and scored one run each in the fourth and fifth innings.

Vidalia will play Texas West in the championship game today at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. if a second game is forced. Vidalia must win twice to advance to the Little League World Series.