Softball playoffs: Keller wins on seventh-inning long ball

Frisco Centennial, Burleson, Celina also among teams to advance

ODESSA — Brittany Lee hit a game-winning home run with one out in the top of the seventh Saturday as Keller beat El Paso Americas, 4-3, in Game 3 of a Class 5A Region I semifinal series.

Keller (31-6-1), the state’s fifth-ranked 5A team, will play Plano (37-4) in the regional final. Plano is No. 5 in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association national rankings. Keller beat Plano, 3-1, in February.

Keller’s Kristin Watkins was 4-for-4 with two singles, a double and a triple Saturday. Katie Ramsay, who struck out the side in the bottom of the seventh to end the game, earned the win in relief.

Keller led, 2-0, before Americas scored twice in the fourth. Each team scored a run in the sixth.

Americas, ranked sixth in the state, won Game 2 of the series, 5-4, earlier Saturday. Lee homered in that game as well.

Class 4A

Frisco Centennial 8, Hallsville 5: Mackenzie Jones had two RBIs, and Allie Cranfill doubled and tripled as Centennial swept a 4A Region II semifinal series.

Shelby McCoy pitched a three-hitter against a Hallsville team ranked eighth in the state in 4A. Ninth-ranked Centennial (30-6) advanced to the regional final to face Forney, which swept Frisco Wakeland, the nation’s 13th-ranked team.

Burleson 6, Canyon Randall 4: Pitcher Samantha Montes and Hailee Smith homered, and Erika Menchaca hit a two-run double as Burleson (32-3), the state’s third-ranked team, swept a 4A Region I semifinal series. Burleson advanced to play sixth-ranked Waco Midway, the defending 4A state champion.

Waco Midway 2, Denton Ryan 1: Midway scored twice in the fifth inning — the second on an errant pickoff throw to third base — to sweep the Region I semifinal series.

Class 3A

Lovejoy 3-8, Paris North Lamar 8-3: Lovejoy scored eight runs in the bottom of the sixth for an 8-3 win in Game 3 of the Region II semifinal series against defending 3A state champion Paris North Lamar. Lovejoy (29-8), the state’s eighth-ranked 3A team, will meet Celina in the regional final.

Ginger Hervey’s two-run single gave Lovejoy (29-8) a 4-3 lead in the sixth. Sammi Curry added an RBI triple in the inning, and Brooke Puckett and pitcher Brittany Lewis each had an RBI double against No. 1-ranked North Lamar. Lewis, who hit a grand slam and had five RBIs in Game 1, was 2-for-3 in Game 3.

Celina 6, Henderson 5: Pitcher Katelyn Drummond hit a three-run double in the bottom of the sixth that gave Celina a 6-3 lead, and the state’s fourth-ranked 3A team swept the Region II semifinal series. Lindsie Knowles was 3-for-4 with two runs and an RBI for Celina (32-6-3).

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