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State top ranked Wheelersburg battled back from an early 2-1 deficit to beat Cardington-Lincoln 4-2 in the Division 3 Softball State Semi Friday, advancing to the state championship game.
Scoring in the game started with Wheelersburg scoring in top of the first inning when a bases loaded walk to Rileigh Lang scored a run. A ground out ended the inning for Wheelersburg, leaving the bases loaded.
Cardington-Lincoln got the lead in the bottom of the first when Riley Burchett belted a 2-run homer for a 2-1 lead.
Macee Eaton who started the top of the third by being intentionally walked, came around to third, then scored as a Burg runner was thrown out at second, trying to steal. Game tied 2-2.
Burg wasted a scoring opportunity in the top of the fourth when Laken Wright led off with a double then advanced to third on a wild pitch. She was left stranded at third base when the next three batters popped out and one struck out.
Wheelersburg got the lead back in the top of the fifth when Haley Myers singled, followed by Macee Eaton’s RBI double to put Burg up 3-2. Eaton advanced to third on a wild pitch, and one out later, Sydney Skiver reached on an error, scoring Eaton for a Burg 4-2 lead.
Burg looked like they would add to their tally in the top of the sixth, but a runner at third base left too early on what would have been a sacrifice fly, resulting in a double play to end the inning.
Wheelersburg picked up an insurance run in the top of the 7th inning when Haley Myers singled to start the inning, then later scored on an RBI double by Sydney Skiver for a 5-2 lead.
Andi Jo Howard retired Cardington-Lincoln in order in the home 7th, for the 5-2 win to advance to the state championship.
Wheelersburg had 5 runs on 7 hits, leaving 7 runners on base and committing 1 error. Cardington-Lincoln had 2 runs on 4 hits, leaving 2 runners and committing 3 errors.
Wheelersburg will play Massillon Tuslaw in Saturday’s 7pm state championship for Division 3 at Akron’s Firestone Stadium. Tuslaw advanced with a 6-1 win over Casstown Miami East in the other semi.