Spring Grove/Caledonia’s Samantha Bratland threw her third no-hitter of the season to help the Lions to advance to the 1AA east sub-section championship game after beating Dover-Eyota 3-1 Wednesday, May 22 at Caledonia.
Bratland retired the first 13 batters she faced before D-E’s Madison Welch worked Bratland for a one-out walk in the top of the fifth inning.
The Lions improved to 15-7 overall and have won eight of their last 10 going into Friday’s 1AA sub-section championship game against Cotter at Saint Charles. Bratland got all the offensive support she would need as the Lions scored all three of their runs in the bottom of the third inning.
With one out Cara Stemper singled and moved to second on Alexy Bearbower’s sacrifice. Lottie Augedahl singled scoring Stemper and Bratland doubled, helping her own cause as Augedahl scored. Lauren Rusert then singled scoring to give the Lions a 3-0 lead.
Dover-Eyota scored their only run of the game in the top of seventh when Hollywood Hermanson reached on an error and scored on a ground ball from Jordyn Sanders, but Bratland struck out Welsh to end the game with 13 strikeouts and just one walk. Jordyn Sanders took the loss for D-E giving up seven hits.
The Lions opened post season play with a solid, 10-0 win over GMLOK May 20 when Bratland tossed a one-hitter and the Lions erupted for six runs in the fourth to break the game open.
Already leading 1-0 SG/C sent 11 hitters to the plate in the fourth and pounded out five base hits with the big blow coming on a two out, 2-RBI base hit from Bratland that scored Matison Scanlan and Stemper that gave the Lions a 7-0 lead going into the fifth inning.
After allowing a pair of base runners in the top of the third, Bratland settled in and retired the last 10 batters she faced. She finished with nine strikeouts and two walks.
The Lions played #1 seeded Cotter at 5 p.m. Friday at Saint Charles with the winner advancing to play either Kasson-Mantorville or Zumbrota-Mazeppa in the 1AA championship at 5 p.m. Tuesday at Todd Park in Austin.
– Brady Ambrose