LACEY – Nicole O’Haver was in a lot of pain on Friday. The pain was all gone Saturday morning.
O’Haver, who rolled her ankle and was hit in the helmet with a thrown ball in Prairie’s two wins Friday, delivered the game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh on Saturday, sending the Falcons in the Class 3A state championship softball game with a 10-9 win over University of Spokane.
Prairie will play Kamiakin of Kennewick for the state championship at 1:30 p.m. at the Regional Sports Complex.
After University scored a run in the top of the seventh to tie the game 9-9, Prairie started its game-winning rally with a walk to Bailee Blechschmidt and a single by Irene McGuire. After a fielder’s choice recorded the first out of the inning, O’Haver line a solid single to left to score courtesy runner Alexis Chafton with the winning run.
Prairie rallied from deficits of 5-0 and 8-2 to win the state semifinals over the Titans.
The Falcons got off to a very bumpy start in the top of the first as the Titans scored five times with the help of a couple of errors, a batter reaching on a dropped third strike and two infield singles of Prairie gloves.
But pitcher McGuire, a freshman, settled down after that early rally to keep Prairie in the game.
Still the Falcons found themselves down 8-2 after Brooklynn Tacke’s home run gave University an 8-2 lead in the top of the fifth.
But Prairie rallied as Sarah Landstrom delivered a two-run single as the Falcons score three in the bottom of the fifth. Prairie would add four more in the bottom of the sixth with Landstrom giving the Falcons a 9-8 lead with a two-run double.