By John Lachmann
Senior center fielder Laura Finke belted her 200th career hit as Notre Dame beat Holmes 24-0 in a District 35 semifinal on Monday.
Finke was three hits away from her milestone, which she reached during the Pandas’ 13-run fourth inning.
Sophomore right-hander Abby Jones tossed a no-hitter and drove in five runs for Notre Dame. She belted a three-run homer in the fourth, her third long ball of the season.
Junior shortstop Haylee Smith also plated five runs for the Pandas, including a two-run double and a two-RBI base hit, both in the fourth inning.
Notre Dame will play Holy Cross at 6 p.m. in the championship game on Tuesday.
HOLMES 000-00—0 0 1
at NDA 218-(13)X—24 7 1
WP: Jones (10-4, 6 K’s). LP: Brashear. HITTING LEADERS: ND—Jones 2-2, HR (3), 5 RBI; Finke 3-3; Schaefer 3-4, 3 RBI; Smith 2-3, 2B, 5 RBI; Meagher 2-2; Sullivan 2-3, 2 RBI. RECORDS: Notre Dame 25-5, Holmes 12-17.
WALTON-VERONA 8, WILLIAMSTOWN 1 – Senior first baseman Julann Ginn drove in three runs to pace the Bearcats in a District 32 semifinal.
Ginn doubled home two runs in the third inning and added a run-scoring single in the sixth.
Walton-Verona sophomore shortstop Olivia DeZarn plated two runs, including an RBI double.
Senior right-hander Hannah Thacker was perfect through 5 1/3 innings for the Bearcats.
Walton-Verona will face the Simon Kenton-Grant County winner in the district championship at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
WILLIAMSTOWN 000-000-1—1 4 5
WALTON-VERONA 004-013-X—8 8 1
WP: Thacker. LP: Pinkston. HITTING LEADERS: WV—Thacker 2-4; Ginn 2-4, 2B, 3 RBI; DeZarn 2 RBI. RECORDS: Walton-Verona 22-9, Williamstown 6-15.
COOPER 10, HERITAGE 0 – Jaguars senior left-hander Hayley Van Dusen struck out 12 in six innings and doubled home two runs in the first inning of a District 33 quarterfinal.
Seventh-grade DP Allana Madison ended the game for Cooper, belted a two-run double down the left field line to induce the mercy rule.
The Jaguars will face Boone County in a semifinal at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.
HERITAGE 000-000—0 2 3
COOPER 320-023—10 9 1
WP: Van Dusen. LP: M. Cain. HITTING LEADERS : C—Nichols 2-3, 3B ; Van Dusen 2B, 2 RBI; Madison 2-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI; Hume 2-3, 2B. H—M. Mullins 2-3. RECORDS: Cooper 6-13, Heritage 6-12.
VILLA MADONNA 15, LUDLOW 5 – The Blue Lightning scored eight times in the first inning in a District 34 quarterfinal.
Villa Madonna seventh-grader right-hander Brooke Meier and sophomore right fielder Abby Bittlinger both belted two-run singles in that frame.
Sophomore first baseman Alexa Meier added a two-run double in the fourth inning to help seal it for the Blue Lightning.
Villa Madonna will face Dixie Heights in a semifinal at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
LUDLOW 022-10—5 5 3
V.MADONNA 810-6X—15 7 5
WP: B. Meier (11-9, 6 K’s). LP: Trent. HITTING LEADERS: VM—B. Meier 2-4, 2 RBI; A. Meier 2-3, 2B, 2 RBI; Bittlinger 2-2, 2 RBI. L—Trent 2-3, 2B; Crowe 2B.
With the game tied in the seventh, Tyler Smith felt good about the Pioneers’ chances of an upset.
For all of Simon Kenton’s positive attributes in this year’s state tournament, scoring runs en masse was not among them.
Highlands was off to a promising start in the state softball tournament, winning its opening-round game on Thursday.
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Prior to the Conner-Boyd County game, teams in the state baseball tournament were averaging just 2.4 runs per game.
It took Tristen Marcum exactly half the number of pitches to win the state opener as it did his teammate in the regional final.
After battling back from multiple-run deficits in a regional semifinal and the championship game last week, Scott did not have another…