SOFTBALL TOURNAMENTS Champion going to regional; Western Reserve eyes berth
ORWELL -- Stephanie Weaver scattered three hits, struck out eight and didn't walk a batter, as the Champion High softball team blanked Middlefield Cardinal 3-0 Thursday for a Division III district title at Grand Valley High.
The Flashes advanced to the regional and will meet the winner of the Kent district next Thursday at Genshaft Park in Massillon.
Champion got all the runs it needed as it scored twice in the second inning.
Christie Novotny and Beth Rowland hit back-to-back singles, and Amy Kennedy walked to load the bases. With two outs, Stephanie Weaver hit a two-run single.
"It's been since 1995 that we advanced to the regional and we are going for it," Champion coach Cheryl Weaver said. "Our kids were so excited about winning the district that they were jumping up and down and hugging each other."
Novotny hit two singles and scored once. Rowland hit two singles, scored twice and stole two bases.
"This group of girls is full of heart and desire; they believe in themselves and work so well as a team," Cheryl Weaver said.
Division IV: ASHLAND -- Western Reserve rallied for a 3-1 district semifinal victory over Mogadore by scoring all three runs in the seventh inning at Brookside Park.
The Blue Devils (18-4) return to Ashland today to play Loudonville for a regional berth.
Keying the seventh-inning rally were Jaclyn Speece's two-run single and Ronda Barth's RBI single.
Speece finished with two singles, as did Deanna Damudio.
Speece (14-2) got the mound win, striking out seven and walking none while limiting Mogadore to three hits.