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Fountain-Fort Carson returns to state softball
Well, look who's back in the state tournament.
Fountain-Fort Carson, buried under a pile of losses after a difficult start to the season and a surprise regional qualifier after a series of tiebreakers in its league, won an elimination game on Saturday to prolong its season.
The 24th-seeded Trojans had two hits apiece from Caitlyn Graham, Amanda Jacques, Lauren Salazar and Jayde Wilson as they defeated No. 9 Castle View 7-5 in nine innings Sunday.
Castle View had defeated Fountain-Fort Carson 5-1 in the regional opener on Saturday, putting the Trojans in the familiar position of needed to win their final two games to advance.
They did so, first defeating Poudre 2-0 on Saturday and then earning the region's second spot at state by beating Castle View in the rematch.
It was just a week ago that Fountain-Fort Carson needed to defeat Palmer and Rampart on successive days to finish in a three-way tie atop the 5A Metro standings. They did so, then took the league's second automatic spot at regional based on a tiebreaker over Palmer, which was then left out of the postseason despite a school-record 15 victories and just four losses.
The Trojans made sure they didn't waste their opportunity.
After dropping the opener, Brooklyn Harbert threw a complete game shutout against Poudre and then Harbert went all nine innings in the clincher that put the Trojans in the state's field of 16 for the second consecutive year.
The Trojans were the area's lone 5A team to qualify for state, as Pine Creek was knocked out in two games in its regional.
In 4A, Discovery Canyon and Palmer Ridge will both compete this weekend.
Fountain-Fort Carson (12-9), under the direction of first-year coach Jennifer Daigneault, had a 3-7 record on Sept. 7 but has caught fire at the right time, winning 9 of 11.