Dickson County’s Brittney Hunt slides safely into third base during the R6AAA title game at Summit
Photo: Carl Edmondson Jr/CEJr. Photography
By Lucas Panzica
SPRING HILL, TN – The Dickson County Lady Cougars (21-17-2) had faced the Summit Lady Spartans (27-7) four times in 2019 leading up to Wednesday’s Region title game, and four times they had lost.
However, in the fifth and most important matchup of the season, Dickson County held on to an early lead to win 6-5, claiming its first R6AAA Championship since 2016.
11AAA Pitcher of the Year Taylor Penning got the start for Summit, but Dickson County was able to get a jump on her in the opening frame. Three hits in the first inning, including an RBI single by Becca Lee and a sac fly from Maggie Terrell to score Kaylee Triplett gave the Lady Cougars a 2-0 lead.
Summit was able to get a run back in the bottom of the first, and two more in the bottom of the third, but Dickson County continued to produce on offense, putting together 12 hits. In the previous four matchups combined, the Lady Cougars only had 13 total hits against Summit’s pitching.
“After seeing them four times and preaching the mechanics of what we needed to do to get hits off them, I think the light finally came on” said Dickson County coach Bert Newberry.
“We crowded the plate and tried to take away that outside pitch, which is what she (Penning) has lived on all year long, and we had some success with it.”
Dickson County sophomore pitcher Ashlan Sensing started her sixth game of the postseason on Wednesday, and struck out two Summit batters. The right-hander surrendered 14 hits, but had one of her best offensive days of the postseason as well, going 2-for-4 with an RBI.
“Just to beat a team like that is an incredible feat, because they battle you from the first pitch to the last and never give up” continued Newberry.
“I can’t say enough good things about her (Sensing) right now, and she’s not done yet.”
Dickson County had a 6-4 lead heading into the final half-inning, needing just three outs to win the Region tournament over Summit. The 11AAA tournament winners were not done yet, however, as the Lady Spartans loaded up the bases with one out and scored Taylor Penning on a sac fly from Morgan Woodside to cut the Dickson County lead to 6-5.
Summit leadoff Mia Apple stepped up with a chance to drive in the tying or winning runs, but grounded out to shortstop Becca Lee and the Lady Cougars won with a 6-5 final.
That gives Dickson County its fifth R6AAA title, and the Lady Cougars will host R5AAA runner-up Wilson Central on Friday, May 17 at 4pm in the AAA Sectional. The winner will head to the state tournament in Murfreesboro, with the loser ending its season.