Greene County Tech falls to Benton in 5A Softball Championship game

Lady Eagles earn state runner-up for second straight season
Lady Eagles earn state runner-up for second straight season(KAIT-TV)
Published: May. 20, 2023 at 8:34 PM CDT
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CONWAY, Ark. (KAIT) - For the second straight season, Stanford commit Alyssa Houston boosted Benton to the 5A State Softball Championship over Greene County Tech, with the Lady Panthers winning 7-0 at Farris Field Saturday.

The Panthers continue their streak in the 5A, winning their third straight state championship.

Houston scattered three hits for the Panthers (29-4), striking out 12 with no walks to earn Finals MVP honors. She finished her efficient outing tossing just 84 pitches with 63 strikes.

Benton gave her plenty of run support early, scoring on three straight hits to start the game. Lydia Bethards drove in the first run with an RBI single, the first of her three hits and four RBI on the day. Cameron Culclager chipped in four hits and two RBI for the Panthers, who had 13 hits in 26 at-bats.

“In the first inning, only one ball left the infield. And they strung together a couple of hits, some bleeders and dunks,” head coach David Reynolds said. “Obviously Alyssa is tough to hit. She’s the best player in Arkansas for a reason, and she showed it today.”

Zoie Reynolds had two of the Lady Eagles’ (24-6) three hits. The team will return the bulk of its starters next season, only graduating four seniors. It was Greene County Tech’s second-straight finals appearance.

“Any time you can get here and you can play the last game of the year, it’s special,” David said. “Especially with the pressure that these kids felt from outside in, tenacity it took to fight and get to where they needed to be. To get in this situation and give us a chance, I couldn’t be more proud of this group of kids and my staff.”

2023 Weekend of Champions

Riverside 1, Mansfield 0 (2A Softball Championship)

Woodlawn 3, Palestine-Wheatley 2 (2A Baseball Championship)

Booneville 4, Atkins 3 (3A Softball Championship)

Benton 7, Greene County Tech 0 (5A Softball Championship)

Harding Academy 10, Rivercrest 0 (3A Baseball Championship, 5 innings)

Little Rock Christian 4, Valley View 3 (5A Baseball Championship, 9 innings)

Har-Ber 5, Bentonville 1 (6A Baseball Championship)

Bryant 8, Cabot 5 (6A Softball Championship)

Lonoke 6, Ashdown 3 (4A Baseball Championship)

Gravette 5, Pea Ridge 1 (4A Softball Championship)

Taylor 9, Mount Ida 3 (1A Baseball Championship)

Taylor 12, Bradley 2 (1A Softball Championship)

Conway 3, Springdale 2 (6A Boys Soccer Championship)

Russellville 1, Lakeside 0 (5A Boys Soccer Championship)

Harrison 1, Pulaski Academy 0 (5A Girls Soccer Championship)

De Queen 5, Dardanelle 2 (4A Boys Soccer Championship)

Green Forest 4, Haas Hall 1 (3A Boys Soccer Championship)