LOCK HAVEN - Williamsport's offense was non-existent in the first 2 2/3 innings against South Williamsport's Lexi Schuler in Saturday's District 12 Major softball winners bracket game before receiving a couple of breaks.
Schuler's defense committed a couple of errors and Williamsport added a hit as it took a three-run lead in the third inning on its way to a 10-0 victory.
Lynna Robertson pitched a one-hit complete-game shutout for Williamsport which will play for the District 12 championship on Thursday at Volunteer Stadium against either South or Clinton. South and Clinton will decide the losers bracket final on Monday at Loyalsock.
Robertson allowed one hit in the first inning and was nearly perfect after that, allowing just one baserunner the rest of the way.
"She's hitting her spots, mixing her pitches up. She's playing well," Williamsport coach Rick Robertson said. "Her defense behind her is playing well. We're anxious to get there Thursday, we've been waiting for this all year long."
Robertson also had seven strikeouts and didn't allow a baserunner to reach third base. Her defense was strong behind her, making tough plays look routine and having just one error.
Robertson received the offensive support she needed in the third inning as Williamsport scored three times on two errors and a Kalindi Maggs RBI single.
" We tried to make them throw the ball around a little bit, tried to lay some bunts down and make things happen," Dave Robertson said. "In softball, that's the thing to do and it worked out. We got some timely hits with some kids and it worked out real well."
Williamsport added four runs in the fourth inning on three hits and an error. McKenna Workman's two-run single gave Williamsport a 5-0 lead and Mariah Wright scored on a passed ball and Sammi Reeder scored on a throwing error at first. Williamsport tacked on three runs in the fifth inning on a McKenna Dawes' RBI double, a Kassy Niabes' RBI single and Robertson's game-ending RBI groundout.
Williamsport showed off its offensive depth as nine players reached base. Eight scored at least one run and seven had at least one hit.
"I actually talked about that in my meeting," Dave Robertson said. "One through nine somebody came up, stepped up. Everybody has everybody's back on this team."
Schuler came out just as, if not more, dominant then Robertson as she pitched a perfect 2 2/3 innings and allowed just one hit and one earned run in her three innings of work. Schuler also had South's only hit, a first-inning single.
She injured her knee, however, attempting to steal second base. Schuler was in obvious pain and was limping to and from the mound but gave her team a chance until she was taken out in the third inning.
"I thought she did pretty good," South coach Greg Hennigan said. "Thumbs up for her pushing as hard as she did."
With Schuler down, shortstop Olivia Fessler was constantly trying to pick her team up with energy and positive reinforcement. But it wouldn't be enough as South couldn't regain itself after Schuler went down.
South will play Clinton Monday for a chance to advance to the District 12 title and a rematch with Williamsport. South beat Clinton earlier in the tournament, 7-1.
"We're definitely going to be swinging the bats between now and Monday," said Hennigan. "Hopefully Lexi feels better and we can get her back on the mound. I know she will, she will try real hard."
South 000 00- 0 1 3
Williamsport 003 43- 10 7 1
Lexi Schuler, Olivia Miller (4th) and Bella Bachman. Lynn Robertson and Kalindi Maggs. W- Robertson. L- Schuler.
South Pitching: Schuler 3IP, 1H, 3R, 1ER, 1BB, 5K; Miller 1IP, 6H, 7R, 6ER, 1K
Williamsport Pitching: Robertson 5IP, 1H, 7K
Top South hitters: Lexi Schuler 1-2 SB.
Top Williamsport hitters: McKenna Dawes 2B, RBI, R; Lynna Robertson 2B; McKenna Workman 1-2 2 RBI; Mariah Wright 2B, 2 R.
Records: South (1-1); Williamsport (2-0)
Next: South vs. Clinton at Loyalsock (Mon. 6); Williamsport vs. Winner of South/Clinton at Volunteer (Thu. 6)