The Beaver Dam High School softball team is heading to the WIAA Division One State Tournament for the first time since 2004 after a 3-1 victory over Oshkosh West at the Sectional Final in Hartford on Wednesday night.
“They were ready to go.” Beaver Dam head coach Abby Schmitt told DailyDodge.com. ”They wanted this more than ever, and it showed. The defense was impeccable. Pitching was amazing and hitting, we got the runners on and we scored them.”
Beaver Dam got on the board in the top of the top of the 1st after Gabby Fakes reached on a throwing error. Riley Czarnecki sacrificed her to third and Ginny Bryant’s single to right gave the Golden Beavers the early lead.
In the 3rd, BDHS made it 2-0 after Fakes singled, she was moved over on another Czarnecki sacrifice and scored when a Bryant grounder to third was thrown away.
Oshkosh West (23-6) cut the lead in half in the top of the 4th when three walks and wild pitch allowed Taylor Emery to score.
Beaver Dam added an insurance run in the top of the 7th as Czarnecki had an infield single and moved to 2nd on a throwing error. She scored on a single by Haley Allen.
The Golden Beaver pitchers were solid once again in the circle. Sophomore Audriana Edwards went four innings, giving up just one run on two hits and struck out five to pick up the win. Fakes fanned six West hitters over the final three innings, including striking out the side in the 7th to earn the save.
Despite having a very young roster, that featured just one senior in the starting lineup, Beaver Dam felt from the start of the season that deep postseason run was in the cards.
“I know we’re young but they (her teammates) all have experience, and we just work hard in practice.” Senior Haley Allen said. “Everyone came in to work hard in practice, there was no taking days off. We are always working really hard.”
The win sends Beaver Dam (18-3) to the WIAA Division One State Quarterfinals at Bay Port High School in the Green Bay area on Monday. The eight teams qualifying for state will be seeded late Thursday night and the brackets announced shortly after.
The D1 Quarterfinals will be at Bay Port and Semifinals will be played at UW-Green Bay on Monday at Bay Port with the state championship set for Wednesday at 3pm at UW-Green Bay.
“I told the girls from the beginning of the season, people would ask me around town and I would say we are going to state.” Schmitt said. “You just got to believe it in and these girls they are in charge of their destiny and they got us where we should be.”
You will hear all the Golden Beavers games at state on 1430 WBEV and DailyDodge.com.
Click the link to hear Beaver Dam softball coach Abby Schmitt talk to the media after the Golden Beavers Sectional Final victory.
Click the link to hear postgame comments from Golden Beaver Senior Haley Allen
If you have a question about this story or have an idea for a future local sports story, please email Wade Bates at [email protected]rands.com