District softball: Y-A teams vying for titles
The Spring Grove softball team picked up five runs in the fourth inning against Lampeter-Strasburg in a 10-3 District 3 semifinal win. The Rockets finished with 12 hits from eight different players. Matt Allibone
Three York-Adams softball teams will have the opportunity to win two District 3 titles on Thursday.
Spring Grove will play Cedar Cliff in the Class 5A title game while Kennard-Dale has advanced to the championship contest in 4A. The Rams will play Eastern York, a 2-1 winner over James Buchanan.
Here's a breakdown of both games.
Spring Grove vs. Cedar Cliff, Thursday, 6:30 p.m., Millersville University
The Rockets (18-5) enter this game on a roll, having won their first three district playoff games by a combined score 20-4. They also easily beat the tournament's top seed, Lampeter-Strasburg, by a score of 10-3 on Tuesday. Spring Grove now faces a 10th seeded Cedar Cliff team that seems to be peaking at the right time. The Colts (15-8) have a solid offense featuring Maddie Sitler and Jimiah McDonald and are coming off a 9-5 win over Donegal in the semifinals.
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Spring Grove will look to shut down that attack with its pitching duo of Julia Wivell and Hailey Kessinger. The two pitchers have appeared in the team's last two games against Lower Dauphin and Lampeter-Strasburg with impressive results. The Rockets also feature a formidable defense and have hitters throughout the lineup. Both teams have already clinched spots in the Class 5A state playoffs.
Kennard-Dale vs. Eastern York, Thursday, 4:30 p.m., York College
The No. 2 seed in the 4A bracket, Kennard-Dale will have to face a familiar opponent for the title. The Rams (16-2) have faced Division III rival Eastern York (16-5) twice this season, beating the Knights, 7-2, on April 5 and losing, 6-5, on May 1. Kennard-Dale's only other loss this season was to Central York in the York-Adams title game.
While the Rams have relied on offense much of the season, their pitching has come through during the playoffs. Alexis Hurley has tossed both district games and given up just one run as the Rams beat West York, 5-0, and East Pennsboro, 2-1.
Eastern York advanced to the title game by beating James Buchanan, 2-1, in eight innings on Wednesday. The Rams and Golden Knights have already clinched state playoff spots, with the top three teams making it in 4A.