Meghan Schorman winds up for a pitch against Buffalo Tri-City in the Class 2A Gillespie Sectional Semifinals.

Gracie Morris reacts after hitting an RBI double.

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Abigail Porter scores the first run of the game for Marquette.

GILLESPIE - Marquette Catholic girls softball coach Dan Wiedman couldn’t have asked for a better display.

After coming off a close call against Piasa Southwestern in the regional championship, the Explorers were terrific in all aspects of the game against the Buffalo Tri-City Tornadoes defeating them 8-0 in the Class 2A Gillespie Sectional Semifinals.

The victory puts the Explorers at 36-1, which is a new school record for most wins in a single season. The 2012 squad went 35-3 and held the record for six years.

“That was probably one of the best ball games we’ve played all year long,” Wiedman said. “Pitching, defense, hitting up and down the lineup, good base running. If they [continue to] play like that, we’re going to be tough to beat.”

“We got a solid senior class that have had a great season, but in the past playing in 3A the past couple of years we’ve had some tough losses,” Wiedman said. “We knew Tri-City had a really good team. For us to play a game like this against those guys says something about [our] kids.”

Tri-City’s season ends at 24-3.

Pitcher Meghan Schorman was nearly unhittable.

She threw a complete game shutout striking out 11, giving up one walk and one hit while allowing a total of three runners to get on base.

“We didn’t play our best game against Southwestern. I think we’re just going to go at it as best as we can and play our game. That’s how we’re going to win.”

Ever since standout catcher, Grace Frost’s season-ending injury occurred on May 2, the Explorers had to make a handful of replacements in the field. Jada Johnson took over at catcher, while Abigail Porter took Johnson’s position in center field. The result has been so far so good.

“I’m just out there trying to help them, and I trust my defense behind me. I know all those girls can play ball. It doesn’t matter who it is when we play, I just they’re going to be there supporting me.”

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“We had to shift a lot of things around. We have three freshmen starting, and I’m always nervous no matter who's out there, the young kids seem to be playing well,” Wiedman said. The more games they play, the better off we’re going to be.”

Gracie Morris and Tess Eberlin were 2-for-4 and Schorman like she’s done all season, helped herself out at the plate going 3-for-4.

Initially, Marquette couldn’t get much off of Tri-City sophomore hurler Kaitlynn Spain. However, that would change in the bottom of the third inning.

After Porter got on second base courtesy of an error, Johnson singled her home, and two batters later, Morris lined an RBI double to make it 2-0. That would turn out to be all Schorman needed, but a lead like this isn’t safe at this stage in the playoffs.

“It’s a good lead to have, but it gives them a chance to come back and think we could do this,” Schorman said.

The Explorers doubled their lead in the sixth.

Eberlin knocked in an RBI double and scored later on off an error. In the next inning, she put the game to bed. On a 3-2 count with two, Eberlin launched a three-run home run over the left field fence. That was her 11th of the season.

Marquette moves on to face the Williamsville Bullets (31-5) on Saturday at 11 a.m.

“They’re always athletic and well drilled. It’s always been a tough game when we’ve played them,” Wiedman said. “I expect nothing less than that on Saturday.”

Emma Nicholson catches a pop fly at shortstop.

Tri-City's Shayla Mills makes a catch in right field.

Gracie Morris at bat.

Meghan Schorman slides into second base safely.

Aubrey Hunt at bat for Tri-City.

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