Lightning dominate
14-and-under softball team finishes 13-1 season

COVINGTON - They came, they saw, they conquered.

That is the best way to describe the 2008 season the Lightning had while playing in the Newton County Recreation Department 14-and-under softball league.

The Lightning finished with an almost perfect 13-1 season, which included going 4-0 in the end-of-the-season tournament.

The only blemish on their record was a 2-1 loss to the Blaze in the regular season with the game-deciding run coming in the sixth inning.

While that one run kept them from being perfect, the girls got their revenge by sweeping both games in the tournament.

The Lightning won the tournament outscoring the Blaze 10-2 in both games, including a 4-0 win in the final match up.

In the four-game postseason, the Lightning outscored their opponents 34-5.

Lightning pitcher Shea McInerny helped the team with their dominate season, fanning 205 of the 356 batters she faced while allowing 39 hits and walking 29.

In tournament play, McInerny faced 76 batters, striking out 41 while walking nine and giving up seven hits.

Offensively, the Lightning were led by McInerny and Andrea Melton at the plate with a batting average of just over .500.

"These girls really came together when it mattered most. Coach(es) David Hall and Pam (Salter) and I did a lot of good fundamental work with these girls and I pushed them hard telling them what they needed to hear instead of what they wanted to hear on occasion in an effort to make them better ball players," Lightning coach Jay McInerny said. "I'm glad it turned out the way it did because they deserve this championship. They did it and I'm very proud of them."

Manny Fils can be reached at manny.fils@newtoncitizen.com.