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Westside, Harlem softball teams stay hot behind pitching gems

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The top two area softball teams in Class AA solidified their spots with matching one-hitters on the same day.

Harlem’s Amber Garrett pitched a complete-game one-hitter against Grovetown on Wednesday, defeating the Lady Warriors 11-0.

Also on Wednesday, Westside’s Rebecca Brown pitched a complete-game one-hitter to beat Hephzibah 10-0.

Harlem boasts a 14-7 overall record, including 3-0 in Region 3-AA. The Lady Bulldogs’ most recent win was a region contest over Screven County, 10-6.

Westside is 7-2-1, highlighted by a convincing 8-7 victory over Aquinas on Thursday. Coach Drew Gaddy said Brown has been working on new pitches and attributed them to her success.

“She’s been working on a drop ball and screwball, and they’ve both been working well,” he said. “She also has one of the sickest changeups in the area.

“We’ve put a lot on her shoulders as a pitcher and she has responded.”

Harlem and Westside will meet Thursday at Westside.

LADY CAVS ROLLING: Augusta Prep volleyball is seeking to maintain the level of prominence that gave it two state titles in its 11-year history.

The Lady Cavaliers are 4-2 following a dominating win over Atlanta Girls School on Friday. While Hannah Masiongale racked up 56 assists over the past four matches, her hitters have reaped the benefits, including Margaret Cavenaugh, who has 10 kills in her past two matches and leads the team.

Coach Rich Bland attributed depth to a more optimistic season this year.

“I think we’re deeper than last year,” he said. “In the past, we had one or two go-to players offensively, but this year we’re four or five deep offensively. I like our chances.”

A test comes this week in the form of the Augusta Prep Fall Classic, which will be held Friday and Saturday. Bland said it is a 12-team tournament with the past three defending state champions from GISA competing.

Augusta Prep will also host the GISA volleyball state tournament Oct. 26-27.

MAKING A SPLASH: South Aiken’s swim team defeated North Augusta 99-71 on Wednesday.

Despite North Augusta winning four of the six relay events, South Aiken took both boys and girls backstroke and breaststroke events for the victory.

Megan Allison and Grant Robinson won the backstroke events for South Aiken, while Audrey Robinson and Eric Esselman took home the breaststroke wins for the Thoroughbreds.

Robinson also won the 200 individual medley and Allison won the 50 freestyle.

Multiple-event winners for North Augusta were Elizabeth Creech in the 200 and 500 freestyles, and Evan Freed in the 200 freestyle and individual medley.

The Region V Swimming Championship will be Sept. 29 at USC Aiken. The teams competing include Aiken, South Aiken and North Augusta.

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