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Seniors lead Lady Rams to win over South Gwinnett
Newton's Hayden Pearson (1) dominated on the mound pitching five innings while only allowing two hits and one walk against South Gwinnett. She finished the contest with eight strikeouts. - photo by Phillip B. Hubbard

COVINGTON, Ga. — The Newton Lady Rams sent their seniors home with a 10-0 win over South Gwinnett on senior night Tuesday. 

Ironically, it was largely due to the seniors’ contributions that the Lady Rams earned the shutout win. And it all started with the play of Hayden Pearson both hitting and pitching. 

Dominating on the mound first, Pearson pitched five total innings. In her outing, she only allowed two hits, one walk while striking out eight batters. At the plate, Pearson went 3-for-3 and accounted for two runs scored. 

Pearson’s fellow seniors performed admirably as well on their senior night. 

Sidney Lindsey scored one run while D’Myia Jackson went 1-for-3 with two RBIs. Katelynn Anglin went 3-for-3 with one RBI and Chasidah Parker went 2-for-3 with one RBI, too. 

Overall, the five seniors recorded a .600 batting average and accounted for nine of the Lady Rams’ 10 runs. They also recorded four RBIs. 

The five seniors’ contributions made it a celebratory postgame senior night ceremony. Along with the softball coaches, NHS Principal Shannon Buff and Athletic Director Vincent Byams were on hand to celebrate each senior’s dedication to the softball program. 

Family members were also present to help commemorate the occasion by escorting each senior onto the field. 

After all the festivities concluded, head coach Virginia Tucker-Smith described the group of five seniors as a “historical” group that will be hard to replace. 

“I won’t ever forget this group,” Smith said. “If nothing else, they’ve put [Newton High School softball] in people’s minds and mouths. They made a name for us.

“I actually started back coaching when they were freshmen. So, they’ll definitely have a special place in my heart.” 

Be that as it may, there’s still a lot of softball left for Newton to play in 2021. 

The Lady Rams return to .500 at 8-8 with their dominant win on Tuesday. Now, Newton began a tournament on Friday, Sept. 17 at Morgan County High School where the Lady Rams will play five games this weekend. 

Smith had challenged her team to string together wins and build up a winning streak as the season progresses. 

 “Our positivity and our negativity are contagious,” Smith said. “I keep telling them that we’ve got to keep that positive energy and excitement up, because that’s when we play our best softball.”