EVERETT - After a victory in Tuesday's semifinals, Fannett-Metal will shoot for its fourth consecutive District 5 Class A softball championship on Thursday.
The Tigers crushed Conemaugh Township 9-1 at Everett Elementary School on Tuesday afternoon behind Jenna Rhodes' three-hitter.
F-M (19-4) will play Berlin (17-5), a 6-4 winner over Shade in the other semifinal, on Thursday, tentatively at 2 p.m. back at Everett.
The Indians scored their only run, an unearned run, in the top of the first inning. But that's all that Rhodes (9-1) gave them. She walked two and struck out eight.
"Rhodes threw a fantastic game," Fannett-Metal coach Stewart Miller said. "She moved the ball around and didn't give them much to swing at. She was at the top of her game."
Trailing 1-0, the Tigers came right back to take the lead in the bottom of the first when Blaire Lauthers picked on a pitch from Brittany Seihl and smashed a two-run home run.
"That really got us rolling," Miller said.
F-M put up four runs in the third inning and three more in the fourth to win going away.
Miller said, "We played some small ball and they kind of panicked. They threw the ball around and we capitalized on that. We tried to keep the pressure on them and the girls did that well."
Candice Cornell was 2-for-2 and Rhodes went 2-for-3. Miller said sacrifice bunts by Megan Dougherty and Melissa Zeger were a big help.
"Zeger also made a catch behind the bag at first on a ball that was smashed," Miller said.
Conemaugh Township 1
Conemaugh Twp. 100 000 0 - 1-3-2
Fannett-Metal 204 300 x - 9-8-1
Conemaugh Twp. Pitching
ip h r er bb so
Brittany Siehl (L) 6 8 9 3 2 7
Jenna Rhodes (W,9-1) 7 3 1 0 2 8
2B-(CT) Katie Reckner. HR-(FM) Lauthers (3). SB-(CT) Zaman.