POLSON — Belgrade put the finishing touches on a perfect season with another dominant showing at the Polson Softball Complex Saturday.
Panthers pitcher Erin Elgas tossed another gem, striking out six and allowing just three hits, as Belgrade defeated Polson 11-1 in five innings in the Class A state softball championship.
Belgrade’s offense only struck in two innings of the championship, but that was enough. The Panthers plated seven runs in the bottom of the second and four in the bottom of the fifth to secure their third consecutive title. Five Belgrade players — Kenna Thomas, Madi Kreiger, Olivia Cook, Lanie Morgan and Hazel Eaton — had two hits in the win.
Cook, who had a two-run home run in the second, drove in three runs, and Maddisen Tomasetti also had two RBI for the Panthers.
“We always say our leadoff is one of our biggest things,” said Kreiger. “So once one girl goes, we all go with her. So I think that was pretty key in that 2nd inning was just having Haylee Curry start us off.”
“We have seven seniors on our roster. Every single one got up to the plate. Everybody on the team contributed,” said first hear head coach Andrea Folkman after her team raised the trophy. “We used the short game. We used the long game. We did a mix of everything to get baserunners through.”
Belgrade was nearly as dominant in its 10-3 win over Hamilton in the undefeated semifinal earlier Saturday. Elgas struck out eight and allowed two earned runs to the Broncs, while Cook and Ellie Milesnick each drove in two runs for the Panthers.
Polson won two games Saturday, first defeating Frenchtown 7-6 in eight innings and then topping Hamilton 6-2 in the consolation final.
For full game results from the Class A state tournament, please click here.