Lady Bears advance to state final four
Chatham Central (26-0) got another shutout, this one a three-hitter, by pitcher Kelsey Hayes and advanced to the semifinals of the NCHSAA 1A State Tournament with an 8-0 victory at Bessemer City (15-13) Tuesday night.
Bessemer City, the Southern Piedmont Conference champ, eliminated the Lady Bears with a 2-0 win in last year's state quarterfinals. With their seventh shutout in seven Yadkin Valley and state tournament games, the Lady Bears earned a date with West Wilkes.
Chatham Central and West Wilkes (23-3), Mountain Valley Conference champion, will play a best-of-three series starting with game one at 6 p.m. Friday at Chatham Central. West Wilkes will host game two and, if necessary, game three, on Saturday.
Senior catcher Erin Sugg, upon returning to the Lady Bear lineup after a concussion, went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI. Senior third baseman Cayley Oldham added two hits and two RBI.
The Lady Bears took the lead for good with a four-run third frame for a 4-0 lead.
Hayes struck out seven while allowing three hits and one walk.