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Evart powers his way past Bucks in semi-finals – Leader Publications

Evart makes his way past Bucks in the semi-finals

Published 7:38 PM Friday June 14, 2024

EAST LANSING – The No. 3-ranked Buchanan Bucks met a tough No. 4-ranked Evart on Friday in the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 3 state softball semifinals at Michigan State University.

The Wildcats had fourteen hits against a pair of Buchanan pitchers in their 8-3 victory over the Bucks in the second semifinal at Secchia Stadium.

The win advances Evart to the state championship game Saturday afternoon against Ottawa Lake Whiteford, which beat Clare 1-0 in the first semifinal Friday morning.

The Wildcats (36-4) finished with 14 hits, including three home runs and a double. They also got great pitching from Kyrah Gray, who went the distance and allowed three runs on five hits. She struck out seven and walked one.

Both teams scored a run in the opening inning. The score remained that way until the bottom of the fourth inning when future Michigan State Spartan Hannah Herman singled, advanced to third on a bunt by Hailee Kara and scored on a single by Camille Lozmack.

From there it was all Evart.

The Wildcats scored two runs in the fifth on back-to-back home runs to take a 3-2 lead over the Bucks.

Evart would put the game out of reach with a four-run sixth inning.

Jillian Decker doubled to lead off the inning for the Wildcats. She would score on a throwing error, which was followed by a three-run home run off the bat of Katelyn Gostlin.

Trailing 7-3, the Bucks (35-6) scored a run in the bottom of the sixth inning when Herman tripled and scored on a sacrifice fly by Kara.

Evart would get that run back in the top of the seventh, then handed it over to Gray, who sent down Buchanan in order, including a strikeout.

Kara started and took the loss for the Bucks, as she allowed three runs on seven hits with four strikeouts. Lozmack entered the fifth inning and allowed five runs on seven hits.

Buchanan finished the game with five hits, led by Herman, who went 3-for-3 with an RBI. She also scored all three of Buchanan’s points.

The Bucks’ seniors have nothing to be ashamed of as they played in the state championship game last season in 2021, the regional semifinals in 2022 and the state quarterfinals.

The senior class consists of Herman, Kara, Lozmack, Faith Bartley, Bailey Trail, Keegan May and Braelyn Dickson.

That group helped Buchanan to a 142-23 record, including setting the school record for wins in a single season with 38 in 2023.

EVART 8, BUCHANAN 3

In East Lansing

Evart 100 024 1 – 8 14 1

Buchanan 100 101 0 – 3 5 1

Kyrah Gray (W); Hailee Kara (L), Camille Lozmack (5)

2B: Jillian Decker (E)

3B: Hannah Herman (BU)

HR: Gray (E), Allyson Theunik (E), Katelyn Gostlin (E)

Data: Evart 36-4, Buchanan 35-6