South Brunswick wins first softball title, sweeps Kings Mountain in 3A championship series

South Brunswick wins first softball title, sweeps Kings Mountain in 3A championship series

While other teams were juggling their pitching staffs trying to find the right combination for a series, there was little doubt as to who would be taking the ball every inning for the South Brunswick Cougars — and for good reason.

Junior right Kina Davis has worked all but 28 innings this spring for the Cougars, and has developed into one of the state’s elite hurlers — along with carrying a potent bat.

Davis was dominant en route to earning the Most Valuable Player Award as the Cougars (27-4) wrapped up their first state championship in school history Saturday with a 2-1 comeback victory over Kings Mountain in the second and final game of the best-of-three series in the Class 3-A State Playoffs at the Duke University Softball Complex.

After firing a shutout and blasting the game-winning homer in Friday’s opener, Davis finished the job in Game Two by tossing a three-hitter and striking out 15 — along with starting a score-tying rally in the bottom of the sixth.

Davis’ lone blemish came in the top of the fifth when Kings Mountain’s Madeline Huffman — also the Mountaineers’ successful starting pitcher — laced a longball that doinked off the flag pole beyond the left-field fence to give Kings Mountain (24-3) a 1-0 advantage.

Huffman was cruising until the bottom of the sixth when Davis ripped a one-out double to right-center field. After a strikeout, South Brunswick’s Carly Clewis tied the score with a clutch two-strike single.

After Davis worked a hitless top of the seventh, the Cougars came to the plate in the bottom of the frame with a chance to make some history for the Southport school.

Kendra Goodwin wasted no time started the rally as she blooped a leadoff single to left field. After a successful strikeout, Huffman was on the verge of escaping the jam with two outs, but South Brunswick’s Tabatha Martin had other ideas.

Going with an outside pitch, the right-handed Martin stroked a single as Goodwin sped home with the championship-winning run.

And here’s the best part for South Brunswick and its fans — the Cougars don’t have a senior on their roster as they will look for a repeat in 2025 with Davis once again leading the way.

Davis finished the spring with a sparkling 0.53 earned-run average to go with 21 victories and a whopping 343 strikeouts. She also delivered 10 home runs — none bigger than the eventual Game One winner — while batting .421.