The 2019 Foothills Conference softball championship – and the runner-up trophy as well – will reside inside of McDowell County.
The West McDowell Lady Spartans capped off a perfect season in league play, beating cross-town rival East McDowell 8-3 Wednesday afternoon at Trojan Field.
West McDowell finishes league play with a perfect 12-0 mark, with East posting a 10-2 mark and a second-place finish in the Foothills Conference standings.
The first two innings of play were a pitcher’s duel, but in the top of the third, West McDowell scratched across three runs off East McDowell starting pitcher Taylor Causby (6IP, 8R, 12H, 4K, 4BB).
Payton Wills and Emma Washburn both singled to begin the frame. Then, after a one out walk by Gracie Rice, a Carley Arrowood two-run single plus a fielding error by the Lady Trojans gave West a 3-0 lead.
East then countered in the bottom of the fifth, picking up two runs.
Dakota Melancon ripped a leadoff double down the third-base line. Later in the frame, Bethany Nichols delivered a two-run home run over the fence in left field, getting the Lady Trojans back within a run at 3-2.
However, the Lady Spartans quickly regained momentum the next half-inning, scoring five times in a frame in which eight batters came to the plate, six of them picking up hits.
With a runner at third and one out, Abby Wyatt pushed across a run with an infield single, making it 4-2. Washburn then delivered another RBI hit and Ryleigh Ogle joined in the parade, providing an RBI single.
Rice then made it 8-2 with a deep sacrifice fly to center.
East McDowell did score once in their last at bat and had multiple runners on base. Emily Crisp doubled with one out, then hits by Melancon and Lily Williams plated a run, making it 8-3.
However, Melancon was retired on a force play at third and Peyton McPeters struck out to end the game.
Arrowood finished with a complete game, scattering three runs on five hits and striking out four batters.