Pats win Morgan County Tournament

CONYERS -- Last Thursday the Heritage softball had its 15-game winning streak snapped in a loss to Loganville. Two days later, the Patriots bounced back just fine, sweeping five games to win the Morgan County Tournament.

Heritage (25-2), which finished Region 8-AAAAA play 7-1 and clinched the No. 2 seed when the league tournament opens Sept. 24, extended its winning streak in non-region play to 20 games. After dispatching of Hebron Christian Academy and Lovett by a combined score of 23-1 Friday (Taylor Moser and Kamryn Toney combined to allow two hits in nine innings pitched), the Patriots slipped by local rival Alcovy, 3-0 behind Kierra Camp's nine-strike out, three-hitter.

The Patriots ran into some trouble with the host Bulldogs, going down 3-0 early until a sixth-inning rally tied the game. Toney had a two-out, two-run single and Moser later added the tying single. While playing under international tie-breaker rules and down 4-3 in the eighth, Diamond Callwood's suicide squeeze scored Nielah Floyd with the tying run, and Camp delivered the winning run with a single. Toney, just a freshman, went the distance, striking out five and not allowing an earned run in eight innings of work.

"I was ... really disappointed with our effort in the Morgan County game. We came out very flat after a long break between games," said Heritage coach Jason McBay. "I don't know if it was a mental lapse after beating such a solid opponent (Alcovy), what we had for lunch, or a combination of both. Fortunately, we had a great effort on the mound from (Toney) and our defense was solid after a shaky first. That was a good, but ugly win."

Heritage wrapped up the tournament title with a 3-0 win over Duluth. Camp was at her best, taking a no-hitter into the seventh, and settling for a 10-strike out, one-hitter.

"Going into this weekend, our goal was to get everyone some playing time and to stay healthy. The fact that we ended up winning the tournament in the process shows a glimpse of how important every member of this team is," McBay said. "I am very pleased with our team chemistry and work ethic lately."