Inland Lakes Eyes 1st State Title
INDIAN RIVER – After falling in last year’s MHSAA Division 4 state title game by a single run, the Inland Lakes softball program finds itself back in East Lansing for the Division 4 state semifinals.
The top-ranked Bulldogs (33-5) will face Kalamazoo Christian at Michigan State’s Secchia Stadium on Friday.
Winners of the Ski Valley Conference, Inland Lakes rolled through district, regional and quarterfinal play with wins over Harbor Light (15-0), Alanson (13-0), Pellston (17-4), Norway (9-0), Rudyard (10-0) and No. 4 Rogers City (11-1).
"These girls have put in so much hard work, and time. Their families have sacrificed, they have sacrificed, and I’m extremely proud of everything that they’ve accomplished, except for we’re still on a mission,” Inland Lakes coach Krissi Thompson said. “There’s two more to go. They’re playing with a passion right now. They’ve got one goal in mind, and they’re not going to let up until they accomplish it."
The Bulldogs will face a perennial power in Kalamazoo Christian. Although unranked, Kalamazoo Christian (23-17) won’t fool anyone in East Lansing this weekend, with seven state titles (most recent 2013) and four runner-up finishes to its credit. The Comets appeared in three straight Division 4 finals from 2013-15.
The winner of Friday’s semifinal will face either No. 5 Coleman (35-6) or No. 8 Ottawa Lake Whiteford (32-6) Saturday afternoon for the state championship.
First pitch in the semifinal is set for 10 a.m.