It took four-plus innings to break through, but Ichabod Crane softball pushed a run across in the fifth inning of Friday’s Class B state semifinal against Windsor. Then, it added a few more in the sixth en route to a 4-0 win that puts the squad back into the state championship game Saturday.
The Riders, who have scored 10 or more runs in 14 of 23 games this season, were held at bay through the first half of the game — only four batters reached base on one hit. The winners only managed three hits the whole game. But their next one in the fifth, and some good baserunning, got them rolling.
Meredith Garafalo led off the fifth with a walk, went first to third on a Emma Holmberg single, then got her team on the board, scoring on a wild pitch. In the sixth, seven Riders reached base — one on an error, one hit by pitch, two walks, a fielder’s choice and a single. The first of three runs scored on a wild pitch, then the base hit — Holmberg’s second of the game — drove in the third and fourth runs to pad the lead.
An Abbey Milazzo double in the third was Ichabod Crane’s only other hit of the game. But, the Riders did enough to support Kari Graziano in the circle. Graziano pitched the entirety of the shutout performance with five strikeouts.
Ichabod Crane faces Marlboro, of Section 9, in Saturday’s championship game at 12:30 p.m. at the Moriches Sports Complex.
Both Chatham and Salem’s seasons ended in Friday’s state semifinals.
Chatham lost 1-0 to Seward in the Class C semifinals, while Salem lost in Class D 4-1 against Deposit.