Semifinal round action continues tonight at the state high school softball tournament in Fort Dodge.One of the semifinal round matchups in class 3-A features this years top ranked team against last year’s runner-up. North Scott enters the contesttop ranked and 49-4 after a first round victory over Charles City. But toget to the title games the Lancers of coach Dennis Johnson must find a wayto solve Lincoln hard throwing sophomore Lisa Birocci. Birocci tossed a onehitter in the opening round as the rail splitters cruised past Cedar RapidsKennedy to reach the round of four. Johnson says finding a way to scoreruns against Lincoln will be the key.Lincoln finished second a year ago but coach Roger Roland says his team has loftier goals this time around.Lincoln pitcher Lisa Birocci (bih-rah-chee) says the team has adopted the phrase “unfinished business”.Also in 3-A, second ranked Sioux City East plays number-11 Fairfield. Sioux City East center fielder Jessie Benson says the Black Raiders are not satisified with a first round victory over third rated Burlington.Fairfield shortstop Crystal Neubauer says the Trojans are confident.In the class 2-A semifinal round top ranked Waukee battles Perry. Waukee finished third last year and coach Jen Slauson (slah-sun) says the experience gained last year has been a plus for this year’s team.Slauson says there is no way to duplicate the atmosphere of the state tournament.After finishing as the runner-up a year ago, Perry struggled with injuries during a portion of the regular season and entered the post season unranked. Coach Lisa Jones says it has allowed her team to have an underdog mentality.Also in 2-A, second ranked Clear Lake plays 15th rankedEddyville-Blakesburg. Clear Lake is making a third straight tournamentappearance but will searching for their first title. Pitcher Kristin Keefesays a tougher regular season schedule has better prepared them for thetournament.
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