The second-seeded Belleville East Lancers made short-work of Springfield High on Tuesday to advance to the championship game of the Sacred Heart-Griffin Class 4A Softball Regional Tournament.
Senior outfielder Amanda Dermody had four hits for the Lancers, including a two-run home run, in the 10-0, six-inning semifinal win over the ninth-seeded Senators.
“We hit extremely well today,” said Lancers. “Our goal is always just to have good pitch selection and to square the ball up. We executed that today. Dermody’s home run went a very long way.”
East finished the game with 16 hits in all, six for extra bases. Kristina Bettis had a pair of triples, Jessica Belzer had one and Dermody added a double.
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Sophomore shortstop Alyssa Kraus completed the short-game win with a bases-loaded line drive on the fence. Catcher Alex Boze was robbed of a home run when the outfielder made the back-handed catch and flipped over the fence.
Bettis, a junior, completed the shutout in the pitcher’s circle, allowing five hits in six innings, while striking out nine Springfield batters.
The Lancers (27-6) move on to face No. 3 Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin, a 9-6 winner over No. 5 Alton in Tuesday’s other semifinal. The championship game will be played Saturday at 1 p.m.
Sacred Heart-Griffin, which finished third at the Class 3A state tournament last season, is an unknown to Peters and the Lancers.
“Either way, we’re going play our game and not worry too much about or opponent,” Peters said.
The winner of Saturday’s game will advance to the Normal Sectional against the O’Fallon Regional champion next Tuesday.