Detroit Central captured its second consecutive Division 2 Public School League softball championship after defeating Detroit Cody 16-4 in five innings Friday at the University of Detroit Mercy.
"These girls buckled down this season," Central coach Eric Peeples said. "With only three returners, I have a lot of first-year players and they really dedicated themselves and worked hard."
Paris Ross earned the win for Central, pitching a complete-game two-hitter with one walk and 12 strikeouts.
"(Ross) was throwing nothing but strikes. It was the best game she's ever played," Peeples said.
After suffering a 16-9 loss to Cody earlier this month, Peeples said his team was ready for revenge.
"We were up 9-8 in that game and they came back to beat us. My girls didn't forget that. They knew what they had to do. We weren't going to let them show up thinking they could beat us again."
Senior Chanelle Vandemier led the offense, going 3-for-4 at the plate with one walk and four runs scored, while Daija Parks was 2-for-2 with two doubles.
In just his third year with Central, Peeples has managed to turn his team into a contender, winning back-to-back division championships after struggling his first year with the program.
"My first year we couldn't win a game," Peeples said. "We've turned it around from that first year. As a coach that's been around, I have high expectations and I see what I have and what they can do. They really came through today. I plan on continuing that winning tradition."
Central finishes 10-3.
Detroit University Prep Science & Math 9, Detroit Community 5: Johnny Ballard pitched five innings with nine strikeouts and was 2-for-3 with three RBI and a double for University Prep (5-5). Sheldon Blythe was 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a double, Daron Ferrell was 3-for-3 with an RBI, and Eian Scott was 3-for-4 with two RBI. Jai-Shaun Isom was 2-for-3 with an RBI and Phillip Hicks was 2-for-3 with two RBI for Community.
Royal Oak 11, Southfield Lathrup 1: David Lundeen threw a complete-game two-hitter with six strikeouts and Jack Zimmerman had three hits and four RBIs, Jamie Bartlotti had three hits and two RBI, and Griffin Caldwell had two RBI for Royal Oak (17-6, 12-1 OAA Gold).
Marissa McNees is a freelance writer; Detroit News staff contributed.