Summerfield's Shelby Bruckner watches as the umpire makes the call after she tags out Hudson's Ashley Schneider in the third inning of the Division 4 regional final.
HUDSON, Mich. -- The Summerfield softball juggernaut rolled right along on Saturday as the Bulldogs captured their third straight regional title in convincing fashion.
Summerfield (32-3) blasted Hudson 12-2 in a Division 4 final shortened to six innings by the mercy rule. The two-time defending state champion Bulldogs broke open a 2-1 lead with three runs in the fourth inning, followed by four in the fifth, and three more in the sixth.
Senior pitcher Emily Puterbaugh allowed four hits and struck out six batters.
"This is extremely fun," Puterbaugh said. "We rely on our offense to get us some runs and then I can relax a little bit pitching. We got it done."
Senior catcher Taylor Goodin went 4 for 4 with four RBIs.
"My focus today was to make solid contact," said Goodin, who had two doubles.
Summerfield advances to the state quarterfinals on Tuesday in Battle Creek, Mich., for the third straight season. The Bulldogs play Gobles at 4:30 p.m. at Bailey Park.
"Winning never gets old," Goodin said. "We've been really fortunate the last couple years, but we have to still show up and play our best."
The Bulldogs, who are No. 1 in the state poll, took advantage of eight errors committed by Hudson (20-21).
Summerfield pitcher Emily Puterbaugh had 6 strikeouts against Hudson and 16 against Concord.
"I would have never thought it would have turned out like this," Summerfield coach Robert Taylor said. "But we really thought if we could put some pressure on their defense and make them throw the ball around that we'd be OK."
Following the Tigers' first error, sophomore Leah Puterbaugh drove in the first two runs with a sharp single up the middle in the second.
After Hudson's Ashley Monahan smacked a solo home run to make it 2-1 in the third, Summerfield's Brittni Collins plated Sydney Spalding with an infield single. Goodin then drove in two more with a double to make it 5-1.
After another error led to two more Summerfield runs, Goodin singled to bring home Haley Wahl and Shelby Bruckner for an insurmountable 9-1 edge. Taylor was able to insert reserves in the sixth and the backups added three more runs.
Earlier in the day also at Hudson High School, Summerfield shutout Concord 4-0 in a regional semifinal.
Puterbaugh struck-out 16 batters and allowed three hits. Summerfield scored three of its four runs on Concord miscues.
Senior shortstop Olivia Ostrosky went 2-4 with a double, while Goodin was 2 for 2 with a run batted in.
The Bulldogs broke through with two runs in the third inning by taking advantage of some miscues.
Ostrosky and Buckner got the rally rolling with back-to-back singles. Ostrosky scored on a fielding error, and Buckner scored on a passed ball to make it 2-0.
The Bulldogs tacked on insurance runs in the fifth and sixth innings.
Puterbaugh struck-out seven of the last nine Yellowjacket batters to seal the semifinal win.
Concord bowed out with a 25-10 record.
Summerfield falls in regional baseball
HUDSON, Mich. -- Summerfield squared off against Concord in the Division 4 baseball regional semifinal but the Bulldogs fell 3-2.
Junior pitcher Steve Schankin gave up just three hits but Concord (30-9) scored the decisive two runs in the fifth.
Senior Jason Wilder tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the third with a clutch two-out RBI single.
Senior Jarrett Garner pulled the Bulldogs (14-16) within 3-2 with an RBI single in the fifth. Garner's single drove in Jake Nowak, who doubled.
The Bulldogs went down in order in the seventh against pitcher Jack Ropp.
Contact Mark Monroe at: email@example.com, 419-724-6354, or on Twitter @MonroeBlade.
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