On Saturday, rising Northwest Whitfield High School freshman Jolie Alberston stepped to the plate and pummeled 11 home runs past a fence set up a few feet behind the infield at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.
Albertson’s 11 homers in the final round of the national finals of the MLB Junior Home Run Derby gave her the championship in the 14-under softball division of the national competition held in conjunction with the MLB All-Star festivities.
Albertson, who advanced past local and regional competitions in Cleveland, Tennessee, and Atlanta to reach the national stage, belted seven homers in the opening round, tying for the lead with New Jersey’s Abigail Krill. Participants are given three minutes or 25 swings to hit as many homers as possible.
Krill and Albertson advanced to a final face-off. Albertson went first, rapidly drilling homers past the left-field fence, most falling over the heads of baseball players standing in the outfield of the stadium normally occupied by the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Krill couldn’t manage to match, hitting just five as Albertson took the win in front of a television audience on the MLB Network.
“I’m excited that I got to come out here and showcase my talent,” Albertson told MLB.com after the competition.
Albertson earned an all-expenses paid trip to Los Angeles to compete in the event.
Competitors came from across the country, having advanced past regional qualifying sites in California, Delaware, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas and Washington.