By Dan Truttschel~Sports Correspondent
If anybody thought the Westosha Central softball team may not have been focused for last week’s sectional games, all they had to do was look at the two box scores.
Simply put, the Falcons dominated – again.
Central punched its second straight WIAA Division 1 State Tournament ticket last Thursday with a 10-0, six-inning victory over Southern Lakes Conference foe Waterford in a sectional final contest at Badger.
The Falcons (20-1 overall) advanced to the final with a 10-0 win over another SLC foe, Wilmot, in a semifinal two days before. The two run-rule shortened wins ran the total to 13 times this year Central has won in less than seven innings.
Central opened state tournament play Thursday afternoon against Sun Prairie (22-2). The winner advanced to a state semifinal Thursday night against either Appleton East (21-3) or Menomonee Falls (18-4).
The Falcons left little doubt in the sectional final, as they pushed four runs across home plate to take command in the top of the first inning.
“That was just what we needed,” Central co-coach Tom Lampe said. “It settled us down and put them on their heels.”
That’s where the score stayed until the fourth inning, when the Falcons added another run, followed by two in the fifth and three more in the sixth.
In the third inning, Taylor Bergles doubled to account for Central’s run, followed by a two-run single by Maggie McMullin in the fourth.
“By that time, we were feeling pretty comfortable,” Lampe said. “Sarah (Fonk) doesn’t give up leads like that.”
Central took its 10-0 lead on a single off the bat of Larkin Langston and a Waterford error that allowed three runners to score.
“I was relieved when that hit went through,” Lampe said. “Waterford is a good team, and I wanted to finish them off as soon as possible. Now we can focus on the next goal.”
While the offense was lighting up the scoreboard, Fonk was doing what she does best, and that’s to keep the opponents’ bats quiet.
Fonk earned her 15th win of the season, as she struck out 11 batters and allowed just three hits.
“Sarah was superb,” Lampe said. “She hit her spots and kept them off balance. Liz (Fonk, Sarah’s sister) did a great job of calling the game. She is like having another coach on the field.”
Langston led the Falcons with three hits, two runs scored and three RBI, followed by Sarah Fonk with three hits and two runs scored and Bergles with three hits and a run scored. Liz Fonk added two hits, McMullin had two hits and four RBI, and Brittany Blazich had two hits and two runs scored.
Central blanks Panthers
For the third time in the spring, Central blanked rival Wilmot 10-0 in the sectional semifinal to advance to the game with Waterford.
Sarah Fonk gave the Falcons all the offense they would need with a two-run homer to right field in the bottom of the first inning. She later added a two-run double in the third.
Central closed the game via the run rule when Bergles led off the sixth inning with a single, stole second and scored on a Wilmot throwing error.
Bergles had three hits and two runs scored for the Falcons, followed by Langston with two hits and a run scored, Sarah Fonk with two hits and two runs scored and Hailey Jester with two hits and a run scored.
Sarah Fonk picked up the win, as she allowed three hits, a walk and struck out eight in six innings of work.