Elly Bennett walk-off sends South Warren to state semifinals
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WBKO) - All season long, the South Warren Spartans have rallied behind the word “finish.”
With their backs to the wall, the Spartans keep their season alive thanks to a 2 RBI walk-off triple from senior Elly Bennett as South Warren defeats Henderson County, 10-9, to advance to the KHSAA Clark’s Pump-N-Shop state softball semifinals.
“I mean, you know, with the 2-2 count, I was saying she [the pitcher] is gonna come and she’s gonna throw it inside. And, I just knew I had to get a base it somehow so we could keep this game going,” Bennett said after her walk-off hit.
South Warren fell behind after the Colonels jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning. They’d score three runs in three runs in the next two innings before jumping out to a 5-2 lead entering the top of the sixth inning.
But the script flipped very quickly.
The Colonels pounced on the Spartans after several infield errors and scored a whopping seven runs in the sixth inning, four of them coming with two outs. Selynna Metcalfe entered the game in relief of Layla Ogden and got the Spartans out of a bases-loaded jam with two outs.
“I told them, I said, ‘Right now, I need to see a lot of grit,’ and I do see a lot of fight and unease right now. They have just prided themselves,” head coach Kelly Reynolds said.
Those words of motivation would help boost South Warren to score two runs in the bottom half of that same inning. After holding the Colonels in check in the seventh on defense, Bennett’s moment came to shine.
With two runners on, including Metcalfe, Bennett tripled off the wall in right field, bringing home the two runners to seal the deal as the Spartans win their third extra innings game in their last five outings.
“We’ve prided ourselves as a team and just not giving up until we’ve hit the last out of a game and that right there, just wow. What a game,” Reynolds said.
South Warren will return to John Cropp Stadium on Saturday at 4 p.m. CT where they will face top-ranked and undefeated Ballard. The winner of that game will advance to Sunday’s state championship game.
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