Roundup: District III makes Big League Series semifinals

Courtney Tate’s seventh-inning grand slam capped off District III’s 11-5 victory over the Southwest in the Big League softball World Series on Thursday.

The host squad from Sussex County finishes 4-0 in pool play to advance to Saturday’s semifinals in Little League’s 16-18 year-old age group. Sussex County will play U.S. West on Saturday at 8 p.m. at Lower Sussex Little League.

Asia Pacific faces U.S. Southwest at 5 p.m. on Saturday in the other semifinal with the championship game set for Sunday at noon.

Kent County’s District I faces U.S. Central today at 8 p.m. in a consolation game.

District III collected 10 hits in Thursday’s victory and scored all 11 of its runs over the last four innings to overcome an early 2-0 deficit against Southwest, which is from Louisiana.

Sussex County smacked four homers in the game, also getting a pair of homeruns from Morgan Smith (2-for-2, 3 runs, 3 RBI) and one from Hailey Andrews (1-for-3, 2 runs, 1 RBI). Jenna Willey added a pair of RBI for District III.

Andrews and Regan Green combined to pitch for Sussex County. Green struck out eight in four innings while Andrews had four strikeouts in three innings.

The two pitchers walked only one.

Senior League

District-III 7, Asia-Pacific 1: Sussex County scored six runs in the third inning to break open a 1-1 contest and wrap up pool play with its third straight win.

Host District III (3-1) will play in today’s semifinals at Lower Sussex, facing U.S. West at 8 p.m. U.S. East plays U.S. Central today at 5 p.m. in the other semi.

The championship game will be played on Saturday at 2 p.m.

Sussex County sent 11 runners to the plate in the third. The big hit was a three-run triple by Kailee Abbott that stretched District III’s lead to 6-1.

Brooke Stoeckel also had an RBI double in the inning while Taylor Evick (2-for-4, 2 runs) and Karleigh Carroll singled home runs in the third.

Brook Ward pitched a four-hitter with eight strikeouts to earn the win. She allowed only a first-inning run against Asia-Pacific, which is from Guam.

College football

Wolverines picked to win NJAC: The Wesley College football team will start its first season in the New Jersey Athletic Conference as the favorite to win the league this fall.

The Wolverines topped the coaches’ poll that was announced on Thursday, receiving nine of 10 first-place votes. Second-place Rowan received the other first-place vote.

Salisbury, which is also joining the NJAC as an associate member this season, finished third in the preseason poll.

Wesley went 12-2 while reaching the NCAA Division III semifinals a year ago. The Wolverines return four ECAC Division III South All-Stars, including junior running back Jamar Baynard, senior tight end Kyle George, junior offensive lineman Casey Ergenzinger, and senior preseason All-American quarterback Joe Callahan.

Wesley will take on NJAC opponent Frostburg State University in their season opener on Sept. 12 in Western Maryland.

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