Yanga powers ADM, 1-0
ADM sophomore Aliya Yanga had just belted a shot to right field that would have broken open a scoreless game in the 4A quarterfinals, but it sailed just foul, even though it was nearly 300 feet away from the plate.
Walking back to the plate in the fourth inning, she figured she would get another pitch to hit since she had run the count to 3-and-2.
She was right.
And she delivered another bomb, this one clearing the right field fence — and staying fair — for the only run of the game in ADM’s 1-0 victory over Clear Creek-Amana Tuesday on the Iowa Central Field.
“I just told myself to keep my head on the ball and don’t over swing,” said Yanga, who also tossed a 2-hitter for the Tigers. “I just wanted to make contact. I thought it was just going to be a pop fly, but it got out.”
ADM moves into today’s semifinals, taking on Western Dubuque at 5:30 p.m. on this same diamond.
Yanga outdueled Clear Creek-Amana sophomore Ashley Webb, who also allowed just two hits and struck out 12 batters.
“Our defense was just amazing,” said Yanga. “I can’t get over that. We are so young…we just want to keep pushing and win a championship.”
ADM (26-10) sports just two seniors on its roster. The Tigers were sharpened by a rugged Raccoon River Conference slate. The league sent five teams to state.
They also took advantage of a late-season addition to their schedule, playing Class 5A No. 1 seed Fort Dodge to a 1-0 game the last day of the regular season.
“Our conference definitely got us ready,” said ADM head coach Lindsay Stanford. “We have always talked about one hit or one error can be the difference.
“We knew Fort Dodge is a great team. That game helped us set the tone for the postseason. I feel like the girls are relaxed.”
Stanford also pointed to the team’s 4-3 win over Bondurant-Farrar in a regional final as a big boost heading into state.
“That Bondurant game was such a tough game,” said Stanford. “We wanted a game like that to keep us going.”
Yanga finished with seven strikeouts. She allowed an infield single in the first and a single in the seventh.
The Tigers backed her with stellar defense, including great plays by third baseman Brooke Hickey and a backhanded play by second baseman Cameran Smith to end the fifth on a force out.
“We have a lot of confidence in each other,” said Hickey, who took a shot off her side in the first which led to CCA’s first hit. “I knew we could make plays.”
Clear Creek-Amana, which plays North Polk in a consolation game today at 1 p.m., pushed a runner to third in the top of the first, but Yanga got a fly out to end the threat. The Clippers (29-10) never got another runner past first base.
ADEL-ADM 1, CLEAR CREEK-AMANA 0
CC-A 000 000 0 — 0 2 0
ADM 000 100 x — 1 2 1
HR–ADM: Aliya Yanga.