WHAT: 31st Annual State Fast Pitch Softball Tournaments
WHEN: Thursday, Friday and Saturday
TIME/LOCATION: Akron Firestone Stadium, the home of National Pro Fastpitch’s Akron Racers. Game times each day are 10:00, 12:30, 3:00 and 5:30. A complete schedule is listed on page one of this news release.
ADMISSION: $7.00 per person for each session. There are two sessions each day, and tickets are good for either Session 1 (games 1 and 2) or Session 2 (games 3 and 4) each day. The stadium will be cleared between sessions.
DIRECTIONS: Firestone Stadium is located at 1575 Firestone Parkway (Akron 44301).
From the North: take I-77 south or State Route 8 south to the Wilbeth Road exit. Turn right (west) onto Wilbeth and follow to South Main Street (approximately 1.25 miles). The stadium is at the intersection of South Main, Wilbeth and Firestone Parkway. Turn right onto Main and then a left into the Stadium parking lot.
From the West: Take I-76/I-277 east to the South Main Street exit. Turn left (north) onto South Main. The stadium is approximately one mile north at the intersection of South Main, Wilbeth and Firestone Parkway.
From the South: Take I-77 north to the Wilbeth Road exit. Turn left (west) onto Wilbeth and follow to South Main Street (approximately 1.25 miles).
Turn right onto Main and then a left into the Stadium parking lot.
From the East: Take I-76 west to I-77 south to the Wilbeth Road exit. Turn right (west) onto Wilbeth Road and follow to South Main Street (approximately 1.25 miles). Stadium parking is available in the lot located between Firestone Parkway and Main Street.
2007 REVIEW: 30th Annual State Fast Pitch Softball Tournaments, May 31, June 1 and 2, Ashland Brookside Park.
Division I: Unranked in the final coaches state poll and making its first state tournament trip, Hudson (28-3) scored four runs in the bottom of the first and received shutout pitching from freshman Mindy Meredith as it defeated top-ranked Elyria (30-4) in the finals, 4-0. Sophomore third baseman Lindsey Bartos had an RBI double and freshman catcher Elizabeth Stokes a two-run double. Meredith gave up five hits with seven strikeouts and no walks. Elyria finished as runner-up for the second straight year and was seeking its second championship.
In the semifinals, Hudson scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth and the game-winner in the seventh to upend No. 3 Pickerington Central, 5-4. Meredith was the winning pitcher, had two hits and had two RBIs. Elyria had just two hits but plated unearned runs in both the first and second innings to defeat Mason, 2-1. Junior Megan Bashak gave up four hits and struck out seven to pick up the win on the mound.
Hudson advanced to this year’s regional tournament before falling to North Canton Hoover in the semifinals.
Division II: Second-ranked Greenville (31-4) made its first trip to the state tournament memorable as it defeated unranked St. Marys Memorial (24-2) in the finals, 1-0. Green Wave senior Abbie Shell not only drove in the game’s only run with a double in the bottom of the sixth, but she also hurled a complete game two-hitter.
Memorial was in the championship game for the first time.
In the semifinals, Greenville erased a 4-3 deficit by scoring three runs in the bottom of the seventh to record it to a 6-4 win over Akron Archbishop Hoban. Junior catcher Krysten Blumenstock had three hits. St. Marys scored two runs in the bottom of the third and held on to defeat Circleville, 2-1.
Greenville, which moved up to Division I this year, advanced to the regionals and lost to Liberty Twp. Lakota East in the semifinals.
Division III: Carroll Bloom-Carroll (23-8) defended its championship when it defeated Navarre Fairless (22-10) in the finals, 11-0 in five innings. Junior Erin Peirano, was 3-for-3 with a double and two RBIs to lead a 12-hit attack. Fairless was in the state tournament for the first time.
In the semifinals, Bloom-Carroll knocked off top-ranked Brookville, 6-1. Jeromesville Hillsdale tied Fairless at two in the top of the seventh before the Falcons scored the winning run in the bottom of the frame on sophomore center fielder Kristen Gromes’ triple to take a 3-2 win.
Bloom-Carroll advanced to the district finals in this year’s tournament before falling to Hebron Lakewood.
Division IV: Top-ranked and defending champion Dalton (27-4) won its second title overall when it stopped unranked North Lewisburg Triad (23-8), 3-1. Senior Jessi Carmichael gave up one hit and tied a state tournament small-school record with 15 strikeouts to lead the way. For good measure, she also drove in what proved to be the winning runs with a two-run double in the fifth. Junior Andrea Arney drove in the other Bulldogs run.
Triad, seeking its second state title, also lost to Dalton in the 2006 title game, 1-0.
In the semifinals, Dalton scored three runs in the top of the third and held on to defeat No. 3 Convoy Crestview, 3-2. Three players had two hits apiece, including Carmichael, who pitched the first five innings to earn the win.
Triad pounded out 13 hits en route to a 13-3, six-inning win over Portsmouth Clay. Three players had three hits apiece for the Cardinals, including junior catcher Chelsie Brooks and junior right fielder Erika Graves, who both drove in three runs.
Dalton advanced to this year’s regional tournament before losing to Warren John F. Kennedy in the semifinals.
TOP-RANKED TEAMS (State Coaches Association Final Poll)
Division I: Elyria has advanced to the state tournament and meets Mason in the semifinals Friday. A win advances the school to the state finals Saturday.
Division II: LaGrange Keystone advanced to the regional tournament before falling to Canal Winchester in the semifinals.
Division III: Hebron Lakewood has advanced to the state tournament and meets Bloomdale Elmwood in the semifinals Thursday. A win advances the school to the state finals Saturday.
Division IV: Convoy Crestview has advanced to the state tournament and faces Danville in the semifinals Thursday. A win advances the school to the state finals Saturday.
STATEWIDE BRACKETS, RESULTS AVAILABLE: Complete statewide brackets for all divisions — beginning at the sectional tournament level — are available on the OHSAA web site (www.ohsaa.org) by going to “Sports & Tournament Info” followed by “Softball.” The site will also include state tournament results and box scores as soon as they become available following each contest.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE FAST PITCH SOFTBALL STATE QUALIFIERS
DIVISION I (Team/Record/Trips to State/Titles)
North Canton Hoover, 30-2, 4, 06-99-98
Grove City, 28-3, 5, 1983
Elyria, 27-1, 6, 2002
Mason, 24-8, 2, None
DIVISION II (Team/Record/Trips to State/Titles)
Clyde, 24-2, 1, None
Canfield, 21-4-1, 1, None
Dover, 19-11, 1, None
Celina, 23-3, 2, None
DIVISION III (Team/Record/Trips to State/Titles)
Wellington, 22-4, 1, None
West Liberty-Salem, 31-1, 1, None
Bloomdale Elmwood, 29-1, 1, None
Hebron Lakewood, 30-2, 2, None
DIVISION IV (Team/Record/Trips to State/Titles)
Convoy Crestview, 26-1, 7, 2005
Danville, 20-6, 1, None
North Lewisburg Triad, 20-9, 5, 1992
Warren John F. Kennedy, 20-4, 1, None
10:00 – Division IV Semifinal: Convoy Crestview (26-1) vs. Danville (20-6)
12:30 – Division IV Semifinal: N. Lewisburg Triad (20-9) vs. Warren JFK (20- 4)
3:00 – Division III Semifinal: Wellington (22-4) vs. West Liberty-Salem (31-1)
5:30 -Division III Semifinal: Bloomdale Elmwood (29-1) vs. Hebron Lakewood (30-2)
10:00 – Division II Semifinal: Clyde (24-2) vs. Canfield (21-4-1)
12:30 – Division II Semifinal: Dover (19-11) vs. Celina (23-3)
3:00 – Division I Semifinal: North Canton Hoover (30-2) vs. Grove City (28-3)
5:30 – Division I Semifinal: Elyria (27-1) vs. Mason (24-8)
10:00 – Division IV Final
12:30 – Division III Final
3:00 – Division II Final
5:30 – Division I Final