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UTM signee continues torrid spring with all-star MVP award

UTM signee continues torrid spring with all-star MVP award
MARTIN, Tenn. — Amanda Brandenburg and Kat Banks are friendly and rivals and that’s why Brandenburg, a future UT Martin softball signee didn’t have any expectations of winning the Middle Tennessee Coaches Association All-Star softball tournament’s Most Valuable Player honor two weeks ago.
Brandenburg, who pitched and played first base for Camden High School, led her Blue team to an 8-1 victory over the White team and a 6-2 win over the Red team.
Brandenburg, who signed a national letter of intent to play softball at The University of Tennessee at Martin earlier this spring, pitched a total of five innings in both games. She gave up one run in each game.
Against the White team, Brandenburg teed off on a 2-1 pitch and blasted a three-run home run in her first plate appearance. Against the Red team, Brandenburg went yard with a two-run homer.
“When they called my name, it got me by surprise,” Brandenburg said. “I thought Kat Banks would win this.”
Banks, who prepped at Beech High School in Hendersonville, signed with Virginia Tech. She led her team to a state runner-up finish in 2009, and batted over .400 for her career in one of the toughest districts in Tennessee. She sported a 76-6 won-loss record in the circle through her junior season.
Brandenburg, one of nine UT Martin signees for head coach Donley Canary, helped Camden win its first-ever Class AA state title back in May. On their run to the title, Camden earned a 3-2 win over the Westview Lady Chargers. In that game, Brandenburg picked up the mound win and ripped a two-run homer.
She hit .454 with 17 home runs and 65 RBI. In the circle she sported a 27-3 won-loss record with a .093 ERA. She recorded 220 strikeouts and 12 shutouts.
Other future Skyhawks have also had big seasons.
• Stephanie Nidiffer, who prepped at Goodpasture Christian School, also played in the Middle Tennessee Coaches Association Tournament. She was on the same team as Amanda Brandenburg.
• Catcher Morgan Harrell helped Reidland High School to its first state softball championship since 2002. Harrell drove in two runs with a double in a 5-4 victory over Allen County-Scottsville. After the two games Harrell spent a couple of hours in the emergency room because of heat exhaustion. “It’s not the way I wanted to celebrate a state championship,” Harrell said.

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