Earlham shocks No. 1 Wilton
The state softball tournament had gone according to plan for the most part until early Wednesday afternoon.
That’s when Earlham arrived to shake things up.
The seventh-ranked and fourth-seeded Cardinals knocked off No. 1 Wilton in the Class 2A semifinals, using an explosive offensive attack to prevail 9-6 on Iowa Central Field at Rogers Park.
Grace Porter and Alli Boyle had four hits each for Earlham (34-9 overall), which is in the championship round for the third time in school history. Porter scored three times. Cora Boyle, Alexis Voss and Alli Boyle all drove in a pair.
The Cardinals were relentless at the plate, scoring two runs in each of the first three innings to build a 6-2 advantage. The Beavers (29-4) trimmed the deficit to 6-5 in the bottom of the fifth on a two-run single by all-stater Chloe Wells, but Earlham sealed the deal with two more runs in the sixth and one in the seventh for good measure.
Wells was 2-for-4 with three RBI, and Payton Ganzer went 3-for-4 with a home run for Wilton.
Thirteen of Earlham’s 14 hits were singles. Haley Glade had the lone double. The Cardinals drew six walks and only struck out twice at the plate.
Madeline Janssen went the distance to earn the win and improve to 24-4.
Earlham now squares off with North Linn (41-6) for the 2A championship at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday. Wilton takes on Central Springs (30-7) for third place at 6 p.m. back on Iowa Central Field.
EARLHAM 9, WILTON 6
Earlham 222 002 1 — 9 14 2
Wilton 020 120 1 — 6 11 3
WP–Madeline Janssen (24-4; 7 IP, 11 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 0 BB, 2 K); LP–Grace Madlock (13-3; 1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K). 2B–E: Haley Glade. HR–W: Payton Ganzer.