COLLEYVILLE — Ashley Hardin’s bloop single to left field scored two runs in the seventh inning as Flower Mound Marcus topped Keller 3-2 on Friday night at Colleyville Heritage.
Marcus improved to 30-8-1 as the two teams will play for a berth in the Class 4A Region I final at 7:15 p.m. Saturday in Colleyville.
The winner will face either Lubbock Coronado or Lewisville.
“That’s softball right there,” Keller coach Lindsay Strong said. “We have nothing to hang our heads about, it’s a game of literal inches and they just had the extra run tonight.”
Keller looked in control in the bottom of the sixth after breaking a 1-1 tie that bridged two lightning delays.
Shelby Henderson rocketed an RBI single to left field that scored Kaitlyn Alderink to give the Indians (30-5-1) a 2-1 lead.
Marcus pitcher Hannah Null seemed to have given up the back-breaking hit.
But that was before Hardin came to the plate with runners on first and second.
Keller pitcher Kaylee Rogers threw a first-pitch fastball of which Hardin got just enough to send it over the head of shortstop April Ryan and into left field.
The dead-spot single scored pinch runner Kelly McGuire and Dani Warne.
Rogers pitched seven strong innings again despite the loss, giving up three earned runs, six hits and three strikeouts.
Null pitched seven innings to get the win, allowing the two earned runs, three hits and striking out five.
Hardin had been 0 for 5 in the series with a walk before her game-winning hit.
Keller’s top three hitters have four of the team’s six hits in the two games.
Strong said she’s more pleased that her team has only five strikeouts compared with 12 in Game 1.
“We’re putting the ball in play and that’s something you have to do against a pitcher like this,” she said.
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