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WJBD - Local Sports - Cougars to Play for NTC Crown

Noah Powless extends and lifts a pitch over the left field fence for a three-run homerun in the first inning.

South Central's Dylan Peters pitches from the stretch in the second inning of Wednesday's semifinal win over Windsor/Stew-Stras.

Cougars to Play for NTC Crown

The South Central Cougars played their way into the National Trail Conference championship game with a 9-3 win over Windsor/Stew-Stras Wednesday in Kinmundy.

South Central jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning, with big help from a three-run homerun by Noah Powless. Brett Harmeier added a run-scoring sacrifice fly in the inning. The Cougars added a run in both the second and the third innings before putting the game out of reach with a three-run fifth. The home team was helped when Kyle Bray reached on a dropped third strike as the catcher sailed the ball into right field, scoring two runs on the play.

South Central Head Coach Curt Jones talked about the importance of getting those runs in the first.

"Noah's homerun...we got another one on a sac fly, so it's always good to get three or four runs in that very first inning. That puts a lot of pressure on them, especially in a tournament situation."

The Blue Devils scored all three of their runs in the top of the third inning.

Powless finished 2-3 with three runs batted in. Dylan Smith went 2-3 with a double and an RBI. Bray also had a 2-3 day. Dre Hill went 2-2, walked twice, and scored two runs.

Dylan Peters improved to 5-1 this Fall with a complete game victory. Peters allowed just three hits and only one earned run, while walking five and striking out six.

The win puts South Central in the NTC Tournament championship game where they will meet Effingham St. Anthony, a familiar opponent to Jones and the Cougars.

"we've played them twice this fall. They know what we got. We know what they got. It basically comes down to pitching and playing defense. As far as hitting, that just comes and goes. I don't know, it's all about pitching and defense, and we have to throw the ball better than what we have been."

The game is Saturday at 3pm and will be heard on WJBD.

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