SULPHUR — Riverside Academy missed a couple of scoring chances early and couldn’t slow Notre Dame’s offense in a 15-0 four-inning loss in a Division III semifinal at the state championship softball tournament.
Notre Dame (31-0) remained perfect on the season and advanced to face Calvary Baptist in Saturday’s championship game. Calvary advanced with a win over Holy Savior Menard.
Riverside’s season ended at 19-9.
The Lady Rebels made things interesting early, getting runners to second and third with one out in the top of the first inning on a leadoff double by Cloe Simon, a walk by Carli Hymel and sacrifice bunt by Camryn Loving.
Notre Dame pitcher Sydnei Simon worked out of the jam by getting a pop-out and strikeout to end the inning.
In the second inning, the Lady Rebels put runners on second and third with two outs on an Avarie Hymel walk and Alainah Felton double to the left-field fence. Simon escaped with an inning-ending strikeout. She allowed no other hits and just one more baserunner the rest of the game.
The Lady Pioneers took advantage of their scoring chances, taking a 3-0 lead in the first on a two-run single by Haley Maloz and sacrifice fly by Abigail Savoie.
Savoie blasted a grand slam over the center-field fence in the second and drew a bases-loaded walk in the third to finish with six runs batted in.
Simon and Natalie Brown each scored three runs for the Lady Pios, who beat Riverside 14-0 in a regular season game.
Lady Rebels coach Tamra Regalo said her team showed improvement at the plate this time around.
“We did a better job of swinging at our pitch and not striking out as much,” Regalo said.
“We laid off the high pitches. In the first game we struck out a lot on the rise ball. This time we laid off and swung at strikes. After the first two innings she changed the way she was pitching, mixed up her pitches and got us out with the changeup.”
Left fielder Kate St. Pierre shone defensively for the Lady Rebels, making a diving catch on a fly ball in the second inning then starting a double play in the third inning with a running catch and throw to third to retire a runner attempting to tag and advance.