All Glenbard South needed was a little spark.
Trailing by 3 runs, the Raiders jumped on Lemont for 7 runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. That was enough to win Thursday's Class 3A Glenbard South softball sectional semifinal 10-7.
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"We've been actually really successful at that this year," Raiders senior Ashton Cattenhead said. "Once one person starts we literally don't stop."
The second-seeded Raiders (25-8) took a 2-0 lead in the second inning when Ashton Cattenhead doubled and scored on a Tarah Valdez single to left field. After Mina Marra's sacrifice bunt moved Valdez to second base, she went to third on a wild pitch and scored on leadoff hitter Payton Carli's single to left.
No. 3 Lemont responded right away, scoring four times in the top of the third inning. The Indians (23-11) took a 5-2 lead with another run in the fourth, and the two-time defending state champions were running out of time to keep their season alive.
"I wouldn't say nervous," Cattenhead said of the Raiders' mindset before their big fifth inning. "I mean our backs were up against the wall, but we can come out of anything. It doesn't matter if we're down 11-1. We're going to push to the end."
After eight consecutive Raiders outs Carli reached base on a bunt. She scored when Aimee Gerhardt followed with a home run just inside the left-field foul pole, and suddenly the Raiders felt their spirits lift.
"That was really big," Cattenhead said. "(Gerhardt) has been in a slump, but I'm really happy she got that because she deserves it, honestly.
"It happened fast," added Lemont shortstop Riley Jay.
Ashley Cohen singled, went to second base on Danielle Scarpiniti's single. Cohen and Arianna Mora, running for Scarpiniti, scored on Cattenhead's double to center, giving the Raiders the lead again. By the time the inning ended, seven Raiders had crossed the plate, giving the home team a 9-5 advantage.
"Our approach at the plate today was wonderful, one through nine," Fonda added. "All of them put the ball in play and made the defense do some work, and that's the name of the game."
Cattenhead drove in her third run of the game in the sixth inning with her third double. A couple of defensive miscues led to two Lemont runs in the top of the seventh, but Taylor Carli got Lemont's Brianna Olkiewicz and Karina Folliard to bounce out to Tricia Weigand at second base to end the game.
"They wanted it. They've got good coaching, they've got good everything," Jay said.
The Raiders will meet top-seeded Montini at 11 a.m. Saturday for the sectional title.