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Top-seeded Waukee moves on

Waukee has now reached the state finals in odd-numbered years the past three times, and the top-ranked Warriors are hoping they can duplicate the 2015 run to the top.

Waukee (40-3 overall) earned a 3-1 win over Johnston (35-9) to reach their fifth state championship contest. The program is in search of its third state championship.

The Warriors will square off against Valley (31-10) on Friday in the Class 5A state championship game. First pitch is set for 8 p.m. on Kruger Seeds Field (Diamond 1).

Waukee started the scoring early, as Reagan Bartholomew roped a two-run single to plate Heidi Wheeler and Jalyn Yaukovitz. Wheeler scored the other Warrior run on an error.

Hannah Hughes plated the lone Johnston run with an RBI double to score Abbie Thilges — the daughter of Fort Dodge Senior High graduates Denny Thilges and Amy (Reiners) Thilges.

Yaukovitz had two hits for the Warriors.

Waukee’s Molly Jacobson earned the victory, going 4• innings. Jacobson gave up two hits and only one earned run. Elly Bates earned the save, going 2ª innings, allowing only a hit and striking out four.

The championship game will be the fifth time this season the Warriors and Tigers have met. Waukee won the nightcap at home 7-5 and lost the opener 6-4. In West Des Moines, Valley lost 7-5 and won 8-2.

Johnston faces Iowa City High (35-8) for third place Friday at 7 p.m. on Iowa Central Field (Diamond 2).

WAUKEE 3, JOHNSTON 1

Johnston 000 100 0 — 1 5 2

Waukee 201 000 x — 3 5 1

WP–Molly Jacobson (4•IP, 2H, 1ER, 3BB, 2SO); LP–Hannah Hughes (6IP, 5H, 3ER, 0BB, 0SO); LOB–Johnston 5, Waukee 4; 2B–J: Sophie Marahs, Hannah Hughes; W: Jalyn Yaukovitz; SAB–J: Carley Shepherd; SB–W: Reagan Bartholomew, Heidi Wheeler.