Jul. 1—Baldwin-Woodville softball seemed poised to win its first state championship since 2012.
The Blackhawks went up a run thanks to a two-run sixth inning, putting major pressure on Catholic Memorial with just three outs to work with in the Division 2 state championship on Wednesday at UW-Green Bay's King Park.
Catholic Memorial showed it could handle it. A two-run single from Abby Smith to left field gave the Crusaders a 5-4 victory and their first state title.
Baldwin-Woodville entered the sixth inning down 3-2 but were kickstarted by a leadoff double from Ashley Fuffer. She advanced to third on a Morgan Hable single, then scored on a fielding error to tie the game. Abigail Nilssen pitch ran for Hable, and she eventually made it home for the go-ahead run on a Morgan Smetana groundout.
But Catholic Memorial responded, getting three straight singles to start the seventh. That set up Smith, who took advantage. Baldwin-Woodville had an opportunity to claw its way back, but went down in order in the seventh after a runner was picked off at first.
Brooke Klatt, Trinity Mittl, Fuffer and Marney Roemhild each had a pair of hits for the Blackhawks in the championship game.
The Blackhawks advanced to the final with a 4-1 victory against Marinette in the semifinals earlier in the day, backed by a record-setting performance from Smetana in the circle. She struck out 18 Marinette batters, the most ever in a seven inning Division 2 state tournament game. The previous best of 16 was set by Mayville's Mel Benter in 1999. Delevan-Darien's Jennah Speth holds the Division 2 and overall record for strikeouts with 22, recorded in a nine-inning game against Maple Northwestern/South Shore in 2016.
Marinette struck first win a run in the top of the first inning, but Baldwin-Woodville took the advantage for good with a three-run second.
Jordyn Letter hit a leadoff triple and was driven in a batter later by a Fuffer single. Roemhild and Smetana each earned RBI knocks to round out a successful frame. Roemhild added another RBI to give the favorites more cushion on a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
The Blackhawks finished the season 22-1, having put together an undefeated 17-0 regular season. They graduate four seniors: Fuffer, Hable, Olivia Dumond and Tyann Mittl.
Catholic Memorial 5, Baldwin-Woodville 4
CM 001 020 2 — 5 9 3
B-W 020 002 0 — 4 11 1
WP: Abby Smith (7 IP, 11 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 5 K). LP: Morgan Smetana (7 IP, 9 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 K). Leading hitters: Baldwin-Woodville: Brooke Klatt 2-3, Triniti Mittl 2-4 (R), Ashley Fuffer 2-3 (RBI, R), Marney Roemhild 2-3, Jordyn Letter 1-4 (RBI, R), Smetana 1-4 (RBI). Records: Catholic Memorial 21-9, Baldwin-Woodville 22-1.
Baldwin-Woodville 4, Marinette 1
Marinette 100 000 0 — 1 4 3
B-W 030 100 x — 4 9 0
WP: Morgan Smetana (7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 18 K). LP: Sydney Nemetz (6 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 10 K). Leading hitters: Smetana 2-4 (RBI), Ashley Fuffer 2-2 (RBI, 2R), Marney Roemhild 2-2 (2 RBI, R).