District 3, Class 5A semifinals: The Lampeter-Strasburg Pioneers defeated the Elizabethtown Bears 8-2 today which means they will play for the District 3, Class 5A title on Thursday.
Twin Valley defeated Exeter Township in the other 5A semifinal game and so the Pioneers will play them for the title at a place that has not yet been decided.
The last time the Pioneers played the Bears was for the Lancaster-Lebanon title which L-S won by a score of 11-4.
Today was a different kind of game. This was a home run derby kind of game.
Down 1-0 in the second inning and playing at home before a packed crowd, Chloe Blantz stepped up and drilled a 3-run home run over the right field fence to give the Pioneers a lead they would not relinquish.
In the third inning, Blantz drilled another softball over the left centerfield fence to give the Pioneers a 7-1 lead. I’m not sure but I believe there is a strong possibility that Blantz now with 13 home runs led the L-L League in homers this season.
But that was not the end of the Home Run Derby.
Daisy Franks stepped up in the bottom of the sixth inning and blasted a softball over the centerfield fence for her first home run of the year and an 8-2 Pioneers’ lead.
Keive Middelton was on the mound and threw a complete game which is the norm for her. She struck out 4 while giving up only 4 hits.
The defense for the Pioneers was sterling.
This is a really good team. And there is a sign on the right field fence reminding everyone of the 2018 PIAA softball title they have already won.
This current team has their sights on such a goal and the talent to pull it off.
Did I mention they also won the runnerup silver in the PIAA state softball title match in 2019?
Interviews with Chloe Blantz, Dasy Frank and Keive Middleton: