The Ready High School softball team blew a six-run lead early but scored three times in the 11th to beat West Liberty-Salem 11-8 in a Division III regional final Saturday at Wright State, earning a return to state for the first time since 1996.

The Ready High School softball team blew a six-run lead early but scored three times in the 11th to beat West Liberty-Salem 11-8 in a Division III regional final Saturday at Wright State, earning a return to state for the first time since 1996.

The Silver Knights will play Lakewood at 10 a.m. Friday in a state semifinal at Firestone Stadium in Akron. Lakewood beat Frankfort Adena 4-2 in nine innings in a regional final in Lancaster on Saturday.

"I just told the guys that it's funny how this is (a game that) we won, then we lost and then we went right back out and took it back again," coach Nick Joseph said. "All of the young ladies did a great job. It was a great effort by every girl in the lineup."


Ready, which improved to 24-6, scored six times in the first inning. Haley Widner and Sam Macioce singled, Sarah Gabel walked and Gabby Gillilan sacrificed a run home. Kayla Goodberlet followed with a two-run single. Dani Pugh drove in courteousy-runner Katie Ardrey and Goodberlet with a double and Justine Hutton singled in Emily Helber, the courteousy runner for Pugh, for the final run.

West Liberty-Salem scored in the bottom of the first, but an RBI-double by Goodberlet in the second made it 7-1.

The Tigers scored once in the second, three times in the third and once in the fourth to make it 7-6, but Ready scored a run in the fifth when Pugh and Hutton singled and Helber, the courteousy runner for Pugh, scored on an error.

One run in the bottom of the fifth and another in the sixth by West Liberty-Salem tied it at 8.

In the 11th, Macioce reached on an error and Gabel singled, Goodberlet reached on an error by the third baseman, scoring Macioce and Gabel. Ardrey singled in Goodberlet for the final run. West Liberty-Salem failed to get base runners in the seventh, eighth, ninth and 10th but stranded two in the 11th.

The Tigers finished 27-2.

"They had a dink hit here and there," Joseph said. "They didn't exactly kill the ball, yet they had 14 hits. I can't tell you how many hits just dropped in. But they were as good as advertised."