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Lady Chargers finish one short of state

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The Lady Chargers gave the defending state champs a run for their money Friday afternoon in a softball sectional game in Lexington.

Covington led Lexington through four and a half innings and put the tying run on base in the seventh, but the Lady Tigers came away with a 6-4 win and earned a spot in this week's Class AA softball state tournament. The Lady Chargers' season ended at 21-19, one win away from a state tournament berth.

“Any time you get a shot at the defending state champs and have a chance to win at the end, that's about all you can ask for,” said first-year Covington head coach Matthew Shearon.

Covington got a solo homer from Hannah Clifton in the top of the fourth inning to cut a 2-0 deficit in half. In top of the fifth, three Covington walks and a two-RBI single from Malia Johnson gave Covington the lead.

An RBI ground out from Ali McDivitt pushed Covington ahead 4-2. Lexington scored once in the fourth and three times in the fifth to take a two-run lead. Covington put runners on first and second in the top of the seventh, but was unable to bring them home.

Clifton, the team's only senior, started in the circle, but had to leave the game when she was hit in the face with the ball while covering home. Clifton and Anna Adkisson split the pitching duties the rest of the way. Treasury Poindexter, Maddie Lane and McDivitt each singled for the Lady Chargers. Covington started the season slowly, but finished strong, claiming regular season and district tournament titles.

“A third of the way through the season we started to jell a little bit,” Shearon said. “I changed the team's routines, almost everything, and I was proud of the way they responded. After the game, I had several Lexington fans come up to me and say we had a gritty bunch.”

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