Contributed The Belgreen 12 and under softball team went 4-1 at the state tournament in Vestavia. Team members are (left to right) first row: Autumn Cothrum, Abby Hester, second row: Rachel Riley, Brianna Wood, Erica Cantrell, Kaley Vandiver, third row: Emma Willingham, Jasmine Martin, Johnna Oliver, Shea Newell, Cortny Williams and Emma Whitfield. Coaches are Richie Hester, Timmy Williams and Chris Cantrell.

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Published 5:59am Saturday, May 26, 2012

VESTAVIA — The Belgreen 12 and under softball team went 4-1 at the Triple U.S.A. State Tournament in Vestavia this week.

The team did very well considering the experience level of the team.

“Some of the girls haven’t been playing very long,” head coach Richie Hester said.

The team took fourth place at the state championship, falling to Helena 6-1 in the semifinals of the single-elimination tournament.

Belgreen defeated St. Clair County 4-3, Oak Grove 7-5, Locust Fork 12-3 and Appalachian 11-1 to get there.

The team ended the 2012 season with a 22-3 record, including wins over Bear Creek, Colbert County, Colbert Heights, Rogers, red Bay, Haleyville, Phil Campbell, Russellville and Iuka, Miss.

“I can’t say enough for these girls,” Hester said.

Abby Hester led the team with seven runs and seven hits in the tournament. Brianna Wood had five runs and five hits, and Cortny Williams had five runs and six hits.

Erica Cantrell of Vina went 4-1 as the team’s pitcher, and she also had four runs and four hits.

Jasmine Martin and Johnna Oliver picked up three runs on five hits apiece.

Belgreen was on a 17-game winning streak going into the game with Helena.

“These kids came together and played as a group,” Hester said. “We had a great season, and it was a blessing to coach them. I think they will do great things when they get to high school.”

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