Orange sweeps Piedmont, wins first softball title
Posted June 3
Raleigh, N.C. — Orange High School won its first ever softball state championship on Saturday, taking game two of the best-of-three series by beating Piedmont 4-1.
“I don’t think it has really hit me yet,” Orange head coach Eddie Davidson said. “This has been a good team all year and I am just proud of them man.”
Orange started the scoring early in the top of the first. Mia Davidson drew a walk, followed by an Abby Hamlett bunt single, and Kristina Givens walked to load the bases with no outs.
Freshman clean-up hitter Jaden Hurdle drove in Mia Davidson with a single to right to take the 1-0 lead. Alysann Lloyd then made it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly to center field that brought Hamlett home.
That is all the run support senior starting pitcher Kristina Givens would need.
“About the fourth inning Kristina was in there about to throw up, I think the nerves were just getting to her ... She is tougher than any pitcher I have ever coached,” Eddie Davidson said.
Givens gave up one run in the outing in the bottom of the third. Kyrah Phelix reached on an infield single and, two batters later, Kat Del Bene singled to left field. Gracie Gibson hit a RBI single to center that brought Phelix home.
In the top of the seventh, after Hayley Funk singled and Mia Davidson was intentionally walked, senior shortstop Abby Hamlett doubled into left to give Orange a 4-1 lead.
“Those two runs took a lot of pressure off us,” Mia Davidson said. “We knew they could score two runs and we would be ok.”
After an infield single by Sara Griffin to start the bottom of the seventh inning, Givens continued to be strong in the circle. She got three straight outs to seal the victory and the championship for Orange.
In the six postseason games before the championship series Piedmont had scored 62 runs. Givens held the high powered offense to just three runs total in the series.
Mia Davidson was named Most Valuable Player of the series. She went 1-4 in the series with three walks, three runs scored, a stolen base, and a two-run home run to win game one.
“Man she is a great hitter, a great catcher, but she is an even better leader,” Eddie Davidson, Mia’s father, said while fighting back tears.
Orange is the first east team to win a Softball State Championship at the 3A level since D.H. Conley did it in 2013.