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Pepperell's Maddie Clay (right) prepares to toss the ball to first after a bunt by Rockmart's Alexis Teems (left) during the third inning of a Region 7-AA game Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, in Lindale. / Jeremy Stewart

The Pepperell and Rockmart softball teams both advanced to the second round of the GHSA Class state playoffs this season, and both teams each had a special weapon who helped them get there.

For their efforts this season Pepperell’s Maddie Clay was named Region 7-AA’s All-Region Player of the Year, and Rockmart’s Emily Loveless was named Pitcher of the Year.

Clay, who signed with Georgia State, led her team to its fourth straight playoff appearance and led the Lady Dragons in RBIs with 46, hits with 38 and runs with 43. The senior only struck out once in 93 plate appearances, while finishing with a .481 batting average and five home runs.

Loveless, who signed with Reinhardt, led the Lady Yellow Jackets to their third straight playoff appearance, finishing the season with a 15-1 record and a 2.13 ERA. She struck out 58 batters and had three shutouts.

Clay’s teammates Maycy Owens and Dahlia Sanford were also named to the First Team, while Sydnie Edwards and Josie McGraw were named to the Second Team, and Chloe Jones was Honorable Mention.

Loveless was joined on the First Team by teammates Cambree Stanley and Alexis Teems. Caroline Conring, Kinsey Jones, Anna Lewis, Emma Evans and Emilee Maulding were named to the Second Team, while Harli Crabtree, Carlee Graham and Emilee Register were Honorable Mention.

Other players recognized were:

Clara Wyatt (Chattooga), Jacie Martin (Chattooga), Sydney Marshall (Chattooga), Hannah Thrasher (Chattooga), Jasmine Crabtree (Dade County), Zoie Moore (Dade County), Michaela Massey (Dade County).

Emma White (Chattooga), Gracelyn Veitch (Chattooga), Molly Linder (Dade County), Kristen Fowler (Dade County), Lainey Simms (Coosa), Harlie Lewis (Armuchee).

Aleigha Allmon (Armuchee), Katie Williams (Chattooga), Olivia Tierce (Dade County), Megan Schauer (Dade County), Samantha Tremmier (Dade County), Aniston Paris (Coosa), Claire Prault (Model), Morgan Frank (Gordon Central).