LIVINGSTON -- Laurel's softball girls continue to find ways to win.
The Locomotives held off Livingston 5-4 Wednesday to win the Southeast A divisional crown and head to next week's Class A state tournament as a No. 1 seed with a 17-0 record. MTN Sports featured Laurel's hot start in April. The Locomotives field 14 freshmen and sophomores who opened this season without an inning of varsity experience.
"Going into the (divisional) championship game, I knew it was going to be close and a game that would be back and forth," said Laurel head coach Aleesa Olsen. "The game did not disappoint. I am very proud to get to coach this great group of young women. They never cease to amaze me with what they can accomplish."
Mia Andersen and Taylor Feller each belted home runs for Laurel in the victory. Anderson and Josie Benson had two hits apiece. Ella Crookston pitched a complete game for Laurel, giving up two earned runs and seven hits with 11 strikeouts.
Shannon Nelson and Marissa Taylor each closed with two hits for Livingston, while Ava Malone went the distance in the circle, giving up four earned runs with eight hits and four strikeouts.
The Locomotives beat Hardin 11-1 in their divisional opener Wednesday. Shelbi Block delivered three hits, including a home run, plus five RBI in that win.
Livingston and Billings Central will join the Locomotives at next week's state tournament in Butte, which starts Thursday, May 27. The Rams beat Hardin 11-9 Wednesday to win the divisional consolation.
Statewide divisional scores can be seen here.