Milton-Freewater 9-10s win another state title

Milton-Freewater downs Hood River, 3-1, to celebrate its second Little League softball championship in a row.

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HOOD RIVER - The Milton-Freewater 9-10 softball Little League team is state champion.

Again.

After a 3-1 win against Hood River here Wednesday, the team is celebrating its second state title in a row.

"There was lots of jumping and screaming," said parent and scorekeeper Cheryl Copeland. "We had the most awesome crowd. There were lots of parents and fans in from Milton-Freewater to root these girls on. I'm surprised we have voices - we cheered, cheered, cheered."

Hood River opened the top of the first with a run - and that was it.

"They played really well," Copeland said. "I think they were a little nervous when they came in because Hood River scored right off the bat, but they settled down."

Kaitlyn Slusarenko pitched the first two innings and Mallory Copeland closed the six-inning match.

"Kaitlyn and Mallory both pitched awesome," Copeland said.

Slusarenko threw five strikeouts and Mallory Copeland pitched six, she said.

Milton-Freewater opened its scoring in the bottom of the second, posting two runs.

Micha Fortune singled, then stole second and third. The next batter, Faith Kelly, walked, then Tabitha Heckman singled for two RBIs.

In the third inning, Racheal Lyon walked, stole second and tested to third. Baker overthrew as she arrived at third safely, and a past ball brought her home.

On the immediate agenda was posing for a picture with the trophy and the Little League flag in the background, Copeland said.

"It was a beautiful day, there was no wind, and beautiful scenery," she said.

Later, the girls were going out for a pizza party and sign their flag, she said.

"It's great," she said. "We're going to celebrate."

Rebecca Jones and Tara Hodgen are the only two returning players. The rest of the team will continue to a different age bracket.

Hood River 100 000 - 1 3 2

M-F 021 00x - 3 3 0

Schelton and Munn. Slusarenko, Copeland (3) and Copeland, Fortune (3).

HR - none.

Hits - HR: Baker, Ellisritz and Schelton. M-F: Shelton, Heckman, Fortune.

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