Friday will feature two deciding games for Class 5A titles involving Lexington County teams.
A day after Dutch Fork evened its baseball series with Blythewood, the Lexington High School softball team forced a Game 3 with a 5-1 home win over J.F. Byrnes.
A pair of future Southeastern Conference rivals led the way for the Lady Wildcats (25-4). University of South Carolina signee Hannah Kumiyama scored twice and drove in two runs, including a two-run homer in the fourth inning.
Pitcher and University of Arkansas commit Allie Light contained the Lady Rebels’ bats, striking out seven in a complete game win.
Lexington took a 2-0 lead in the first inning. The first of Sarah Gordon’s two hits was a double that scored Kumiyama from first base. Gordon then raced home on Jessica Senn’s bloop single to center.
In the Bottom second, Jaci Fleming legs out an infield single and scores on Kumiyama’s two-out RBI triple down the leftfield line.
Byrnes threatened in the Top fourth. After runners reached on a single and error, Logan Henderson singled to leftfield.
McKinna Taylor attempted to score, but Fleming’s throw from rightfield arrived in time for Sarah Gordon to make the tag for the third out.
A walk by Alyssa McGraw provided another RBI opportunity for Kumiyama. She proceeded to send Hayee Whitesides’ first pitch over the centerfield fence to extend Lexington’s lead.
After four shutout innings by Light, Kasey Widmyer put Byrnes on the board with a solo home run in the Top fifth. Light allowed just one hit from the final nine batters she faced in the contest.
Game 3 will take place at 7 p.m. in Rock Hill at Northwestern High School. Lexington (25-4) can claim its fifth state title overall, moving it into sole possession of fourth place all-time in S.C. High School League history, and first since 2001. J.F. Byrnes (29-4) is seeking its third state title in the past six years.