OXFORD – Orange Beach High School’s girls’ softball team ended its first season in memorable fashion. Makos’ seventh-grader Ava Hodo launched a dramatic …
OXFORD – Orange Beach High School’s girls’ softball team ended its first season in memorable fashion. Makos’ seventh-grader Ava Hodo launched a dramatic two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning, lifting Orange Beach to a 3-2 victory over Pisgah in the Thursday’s Class 2A championship game at Choccolocco Park’s softball stadium. Hodo’s teammates mobbed her at home plate as she ended the school’s first year with a state championship.
“I just wanted to hit a line drive to get my team going and start something,” Hodo told AL.com after the game. “To get a walk-off, it’s something you dream about. I’m so excited. I’m just over the moon. At the first of the year, Coach told us he was going to throw us in the deep end to see if we could swim. It turns out we really could.”
Orange Beach High School was opened in the beach city in August of 2020 after nearby Gulf Shores created a municipal city school system after separating from Baldwin County Public Schools.
The Makos (35-9) won four straight at this week’s 2A state tournament and knocked off powerhouse Pisgah – a program with 10 titles, all since 2001 – in the championship round.
Orange Beach took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Teagan Revette walked and later scored on a passed ball, and Pisgah tied it in the second when Karlee Holcomb singled home Hannah Duncan. Makos’ pitcher Justine Henderson and Pisgah pitcher Piper Anderson then took control until the ninth inning.
In the fifth, Orange Beach appeared to grab the lead when Falyn Beebe scored on Henderson’s flyout to right. But Beebe was called out for leaving third too early on her tag-up, leaving the game at 1-all.
Things stayed tied until the ninth when Pisgah’s Holcomb doubled off the centerfield fence to score Duncan for a 2-1 lead. In the bottom of the ninth, Orange Beach’s Daigle Wilson drew a one-out walk, and Hodo followed with her game-ending homer.
“Coach was telling us it was just like icing on the cake to get here,” said Hodo. “Now that we’re champions, he’s like we just added so many sprinkles, candles and everything. I know this is the best feeling ever. It’s something I’ll never forget.”
For more visit the Alabama High School Athletic Assiciation website at: AHSAA.com.