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Creekview wins 7-AAA softball title
Creekview, White County, West Hall and Lumpkin County all qualify for North Sectionals
Creekview baserunner Kate Gorczyca (7) is tagged out at second base by White County’s Heather Herdliska after Gorczca’s run-scoring single in Friday afternoon’s Region 7-AAA championship game at Lanier Point Park
The taste of victory has never been sweeter for the Creekview Lady Grizzlies, who defeated the White County Lady Warriors 5-0 on Friday afternoon at Lanier Point softball complex in Gainesville.

The Lady Grizzlies (29-6) were led by the brilliant pitching of sophomore Haley Brannon, who pitched a complete-game, two-hit shutout to help lead her team to victory. Brannon also added eight strikeouts with just one walk in the win.

White County fell just short and took second place in the region, but Lady Warriors coach John Brown said his team had nothing to be ashamed of.

"The girls played well," Brown said. "We lost to Creekview three times during the season. They are a very good ball team. They are coached well, their fundamentals are very sound."

When asked about the Class AAA sectionals, Brown said, "hopefully we will do well."

State sectionals begin next Friday at Lanier Point. Creekview (No. 1 seed), White County (No. 2), West Hall (No. 3), and Lumpkin County (No. 4) will represent Region 7-AAA. The opponents are still to be determined, but they will play the teams out of Region 8-AAA.

In the first inning Friday night, both White County and Creekview left a runner stranded on base. In the top half of the second inning Brannon struck out the side, but the Lady Grizzlies had no luck though in the bottom half of the second inning, going three-up, three-down.

It was not until the bottom of the fourth that the Lady Grizzlies were able to give Brannon some run support. White County pitcher Stephanie Satterfield surrendered four hits and was hurt by an error in the infield. Ultimately, the tie game turned into a 3-0 deficit for the Lady Warriors.

The bottom of the fifth inning wouldn’t get better for White County. Creekview’s Kate Gorczyca smacked a two-run home run during the inning to provide the final margin of victory.

"(Winning the region) was our goal from the beginning of the season," Creekview coach Mike Naylam said. "(We knew) if we played like we could have, we would be able to compete and achieve our goal.

"We have to pitchers that can pitch," Naylam added. "I am lucky to have these players on my team. They make it difficult on any team to be able to get a hit. Haley took command of the strike zone today and made it difficult for (White County). We can run, bunt, and hit. They did a good job and I am very of proud of the girls for this."

Coach Naylam then set his sights on the sectionals.

"State is next," he said. "You are one of 32 (teams) that could win. We had to get in it first to be able to have a chance and we did that. Now the mindset turns to win one and advance or survive and advance. It will be competitive with our four Region 7-AAA teams in the playoffs. It will not be easy for anyone to put any of our teams out."

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