In the losers’ bracket final, Damonte loaded the bases with one out in the top of the sixth inning and Reed pitcher Jackie Sertic -- throwing her second game of the day -- came up huge.
The Raiders probably shouldn’t have been in the jam due to a missed call that cost them a double play. However, that didn’t deter Sertic, who struck out the next two batters to keep the 2-0 lead intact.
“I can’t say enough about Jackie. There’s no one who works harder than her. She doesn’t get rattled. She gets herself in some situations, but she gets herself out,” Reed softball coach Jon Wunder said. “That’s a phenomenal team over there that we just beat. We’re not done.”
Sertic scattered seven hits in the complete game and eight Mustangs were left on base. She had eight strikeouts and walked one.
Reed got all the offense it needed in one inning, just like it had against the Miners.
Freshman Mackenzie Goins was forced from her normal duties at shortstop due to an injury, but her bat was still in the lineup right in the middle of the order. It’s a good thing.
After Mary Dettling led off the bottom of the fourth with a line drive single to left field, Goins belted a 0-1 pitch over the fence in center field for a two-run homer.
“Kenzie, we’ve been talking about her for a week now. You make a mistake to a big, strong girl on a short field like this, she’s going to make you pay,” Wunder said.
Reed managed eight hits off Damonte ace Kalyn Paque and left seven runners on base.
Dettling, Goins and Lindsay Yearman each rapped out two hits.
Reed (26-7-3) will face Douglas at noon Saturday, but will need to beat the Tigers twice in order to take its first regional crown since 2009.
“When we lost to Galena Tuesday, we just told them to never give up. My daughter was a senior in 2009 and we lost our first game to Reno. We went in and made them stare at the banner,” Wunder said. “I told them to look at the names on there because they can never be erased. I told them they can do it if they believe in themselves. We’ve been through a lot of adversity. We lost some players and we have some players injured. These girls are believing in themselves and picking each other up.
“There’s no doubt that was a big win for us, but we’re not settling. We’ve got to come out and get two wins from a tough Douglas team tomorrow. They took us 19 innings, they beat us and they’re hitting the ball right now. We’ve got to bring our ‘A’ game. It’s far from over.”
Earlier Friday, Reed made quick work of Manogue to reach the losers’ bracket final. The Raiders scored three runs in the first inning and that’s all it took in the 3-1 victory.
With two outs in the bottom of the first and a runner on first following an error, Goins ripped a single to the outfield. Marriah Levesque hustled from first to third and Goins trotted into second on the throw to third.
Yearman singled to right field, bringing in both runners as the ball was bobbled.
Britni Greninger sent Yearman home from first with an RBI triple, giving the home team a 3-0 lead after one inning.
The Miners recorder their only run off Sertic in the fourth frame.
JoJo Young laced her second single of the game and Miners pitcher Kayla Batastini drove her home with a two-out double, accounting for the final 3-1 margin.
Yearman had two hits for the Blue and Gold.