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Improved Tide fall in playoffs
Long County catcher Madalyne Flynn holds her ground at the plate. - photo by Gavin Vickers

The Long County High School softball ended its season Wednesday with two playoff losses to Bacon County in Alma. The No. 2-ranked Raiders were too much for the Blue Tide as Long County fell, 8-0 and 12-0.  
In the first game, Cat Wingate took the loss on the hill for Long County. Harley Dawson got the loss in the second game.
Wingate led the team in batting in the first game, going 1-for-2 at the plate, while in the second game, Taylor Poole was the leader, also going 1-for-2.
 “Bacon County has a great team with some great coaches,” Long County head coach Brian Thomas said. “We have a ton of respect for them and their program. They are where we aim to be in the next few seasons. We wish them the best as they continue on through the playoffs.”
Thomas said that while his team played hard, they simply were out-matched on the field.
“We got beat by a better team in all phases of the game,” he said. “Bacon County was more seasoned and have some really talented players that played to their potential against us.”
However, Thomas believes that he and his team will learn from the two losses and be better as a result.
“I thought this was a great learning lesson for us,” he said. “I believe that we now realize how tough it is to go on the road in the playoffs and beat good teams. Hopefully, this will allow us to see just how important each game is, especially early in the season.”
The Lady Tide ended the season with 12 wins, an improvement from last season’s five wins. Nine of the 10 starters from this season are set to return next season. Some of the key players expected to return include Dawson, Wingate, Poole, Sam Garcia, Brittany Smiley, Alyssa Anderson, Kaylyn McEwin, Madalyne Flynn, Katie Estill, Emily Hester, Hannah Golden, Allissa Anderson and Makaylee Fowler. Erica Golden is the only senior Long County will lose to graduation.
    “Losing Erica (Golden) will be no easy task for us,” Thomas said. “She was our leader, but I believe that we have a few ladies that are ready to step in and take that leadership role. As far as personnel coming back, we are very excited.”

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