Lady Patriots finish on a high note, take 3rd in state

Darren Kinnard

PEORIA — Just a couple of hours after suffering a heartbreaking, 1-0 loss to eventual state champion Rockridge in the semifinals, the Massac County Lady Patriots bounced back to take care of Tolono (Unity) 5-1 to win the 2A Third Place Game.

The Lady Patriots finish 25-3 on the season.

Jenna Bunting and Larkin Korte each hit solo home runs. Cali McCraw had two hits and drove three in addition to pitching a four-hitter in her high school game.

Sophomore left fielder Sophie Bormann made the play of the game, reaching over the fence in foul territory to catch Hailey Flesch’s foul ball. You can see the play in the highlights above.

Earlier in the semifinal game, Rockridge scored a run in the first, and freshman pitcher Kendra Lewis made it stand up. Lewis held the Lady Patriots to one hit, striking out 11 while walking five. Massac County did have several chances, but wound up leaving seven runners on base for the game. Rockridge finished 29-0 and state champion after defeating Joliet Catholic 4-0 in the title game.

The IHSA made changes to the state series format in baseball and softball this year due to the pandemic, with the semifinals and trophy game being played on the same day. The venue was new too, as the softball state games have moved from the Eastside Centre in East Peoria to the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex in Peoria.