Bartlett pitcher Holly Pagan wasn't concerned about a no-hitter or a perfect game she lost in the Hawks' 9-1 regional semifinal win over No. 12 Addison Trail on Thursday.
The junior was just worried about pitching her softball team to the regional championship game.
Pagan, who pitched 6 solid innings giving up 1 earned run on no hits while striking out 6 and walking 5, watched her teammates mount a lead by capitalizing on 7 Blazer errors, 3 of which came in a 6-run fourth inning.
The win earned the fifth-seeded Hawks a spot in their own Class 4A regional championship Saturday at noon against No. 4 Lake Park, a team Bartlett beat 5-2 last Friday.
The Lancers earned a split with the Hawks this year, with a 6-3 win coming on April 25 in eight innings, so things should be interesting as Bartlett (26-9) will go for its second-straight regional championship and its fifth under coach Jim Wolfsmith. The Hawks were Class 4A state runners-up last year.
"I just wanted to win so we can go and try to win regionals," Pagan said of her first postseason game. "And I definitely need to work on some stuff so I can get better in the upcoming games this year."
Pagan's perfect game was lost due to an error in the first inning. And 4 of her 5 walks came after Bartlett gained an 8-0 lead. But she struck out the side in the fourth with a runner in scoring position and escaped the fifth with just the 1 run on 4 walks.
"She threw the ball hard today, changeup looked good, she wasn't crisp in the strike zone as we would like but they didn't get a hit against her so we're not going to complain," Wolfsmith said. "She pitched out of some troubles."
And her teammates were busy putting the Blazers (11-19) into some as well.
The Hawks right away showed Addison Trail what would happen if you gave them extra outs. Rachel Odolski and Katie Fornoff reached on back-to-back errors in Bartlett's half of the first and both came in to score for an early 2-0 lead.
Sydney Johnson started off the fourth similarly, and then Alyssa Nowak and Dana Paul followed with consecutive doubles. Paul's was an RBI and a fielder's choice by Cara Carrion and an error tacked on another run. A walk, an error, some solid baserunning and another fielder's choice gave Bartlett a commanding 8-run lead.
"I think that gap gave us reassurance in the field and it definitely got the spirit going and all our bats came out," said Odolski, who was 2-for-2 with an RBI and a run scored. "I think we got a good jump in the postseason, of course our next game is going to be a tough one but with this energy, I'm pretty sure we can pull through this."
Kayla Haberstich was 2-for-3 with a stolen base and Nowak was 2-for-4 with an RBI.
On the other side, Bree Murray was charged with the loss while Cori Cooney accounted for the lone hit for the Blazers, who got their only run in the fifth on a series of walks.
"You can't have a game like that defensively against a great team like this and expect to win," Addison Trail coach Mark Olson said. "That just hasn't been our game, we're a young team and maybe we got caught up in the moment."