"It feels great to achieve another goal," said Monett coach Ty Goetz. "We know that we still have more to accomplish this season, but we couldn't reach those goals without getting a victory today."
The Lady Cubs were facing the Lady Bulldogs for the second time this season. Monett handed Carl Junction a 2-0 defeat on Sept. 18 and were looking to hold off the third-seeded Lady Bulldogs upset bid.
The Lady Cubs quickly warmed the chilly weather with their hot bats in the bottom of the first.
Allie Krueger singled to open the frame and scored on Abby Krueger's two-out single to give Monett a 1-0 lead.
The game remained tied until the fifth when Monett retook the lead.
Ratliff reached on an error, when an errant throw pulled first basemen Tosha Steele off the bag. Kelsey Wiseman then singled and Abby Krueger sacrificed to move the runners to second and third. Josee Krueger then hit a fly ball to left field to score Ratliff and give the Lady Cubs a 2-1 edge.
Carl Junction would threaten in the top of the sixth.
Steele was issued a one-out walk. A passed ball and a fly out allowed Steele to reach third base. With two out and Steele at third, Lady Bulldogs' hitter Michaela Horn drilled a bouncing bullet to Monett shortstop Brooke Madison.
The ball bounced up and hit Madison in the chest, but fell right in front of her. Madison quickly gathered herself fielded the ball and fired to first base to record the out and preserve the one-run lead.
"That play was the defensive play of the game," said Goetz. "That ball was hit hard and Brooke did a good job of keeping it in front of her. That play saved a run for sure."
Monett added two big insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth. Andrea Soriano and Madison reached to start the inning and a two-out, two-strike pitch was hit into centerfield by Allie Krueger to score the runners to provide the final margin of victory.
"We'll take the win," said Goetz. "The girls did what they have done all season. They found a way to win."
The Lady Cubs advanced to the Class 3, district 12-championship game with an 8-0 victory over Cassville on Oct. 5.
Monett took control of the game early, scoring four runs in the first inning off three consecutive hits and two Lady Wildcat errors.
Allie Krueger led off the game with a double for the Lady Cubs. Consecutive singles by Ratliff and Wismen loaded the bases. Abby Krueger reached on an error that allowed Krueger and Ratliff to score and Josee Krueger's single drove in Wiseman and Abby Krueger to give Monett a 4-0 lead.
"Anytime you can score four times and put your opponent in an early hole you have an advantage," said Goetz. "The girls took care of business and we got the win."
Allie Krueger was stellar on the mound for Monett. She allowed three hits in seven innings and struck out 11.
Cassville never got on track at the plate.
"Allie is good about keeping hitters off-balance," said Goetz. "It was a good win for our team."
Monett will host Bolivar in the sectional playoff round on Wednesday, Oct 10. First pitch is set for 5 p.m.