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DEFENDING CHAMP SHUTS DOWN EAGLES

East Lake is unable to answer Durant's offensive outburst that includes 14 hits.

Apparently, defending state champion Durant has its sights set on two in a row. The Cougars dominated in Thursday's Class 8A region quarterfinal, defeating East Lake 11-0 in five innings.

"We're going for everything," Durant coach Matt Carter said. "We're going for the gusto."

The Cougars (20-8) turned a meager 2-0 lead into a romp that ended early due to the 10-run mercy rule by scoring nine runs over the third and fourth innings. They also had 11 of their 14 hits in that span.

"We're hitting the ball good; we're seeing the ball good," Carter said.

Kennedy Dean hit a run-scoring double in Durant's five-run third and saved her biggest hit of the season for the fourth. That's when she blasted her first home run of the year, a three-run shot, over the leftfield fence.

Durant took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first on back-to-back RBI doubles by Brooke Freeman and Alyssa Colding, who also singled and walked and scored twice. Madison Farrell added two run-scoring singles for the Cougars in their big innings.

East Lake (17-10) mustered just three hits off pitcher Paige Davis but put runners on first and second in the first two innings. Both times, Davis got batters to fly out to rightfielder Caylin Delones.

Davis finished with three strikeouts and two walks in her short stint.

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