Your Prep Sports
The first 16 spots at the 2023 state softball tournament are secured.
By the end of the night on Tuesday all 40 teams that are headed to Rogers Sports Complex in Fort Dodge next week will be set.
Regional finals were held for Classes 1A and 2A on Monday with the three largest classes in the state taking center stage on Tuesday.
Before the action gets rolling on Tuesday evening we take a quick look at the two regional finals featuring teams from the Your Prep Sports area.
Class 3A, Region 7
No. 11 Solon (24-13) at No. 3 Dubuque Wahlert (30-8)
When: Tuesday, 5 p.m.
Where: Dubuque Wahlert High School
Top players: Solon – Hilary Wilson, Sr., .452 BA, 31 Runs, 34 RBI; Addie Miller, Soph., .419 BA, 8 HR, 33 RBI. Dubuque Wahlert – Julia Roth, Fr., .504 BA, 12 HR, 55 RBI, 13-3, 1.92 ERA, 80 K, 105 2/3 IP; Ruth Tauber, Fr., 9 HR, 34 RBI, 31 BB.
About the Spartans: Solon returns to the regional title game after dropping its postseason opener a year ago and is seeking the first trip to the state tournament since 2016.
The Spartans have hit stride late in the season winning seven of their last nine games including four in a row.
Solon escaped with a 4-3 12-inning win over WAMAC rival West Delaware in its regional opener and rolled past Monticello 11-1 in the semifinals on Saturday.
The Spartans had six extra-base hits among its 16 hits in the semifinal win over Monticello and are hitting .347 as a team in regional play.
Senior shortstop Hilary Wilson and sophomore catcher Addie Miller lead the way for Solon offensively while Izzy Frees is hitting .380 and has been red hot in the postseason.
Frees is 7-for-11 with two home runs and four RBI in two regional wins.
About the Golden Eagles: Dubuque Wahlert is seeking a return trip to the state tournament after falling to eventual 3A state champion Mount Vernon 3-1 in the opening round a year ago.
The Golden Eagles are both battle tested and playing their best softball down the stretch.
Of the eight losses for Dubuque Wahlert seven have come to teams from larger classes with six of those losses coming to ranked opponents.
The lone loss to a 3A team for the Golden Eagles this season came against second-ranked Davenport Assumption.
Dubuque Wahlert hasn’t just played good competition, it has won those games posting 13 wins against ranked teams including eight wins over ranked 4A or 5A competition.
The Golden Eagles have won nine of their last 10 games after outscoring regional opponents North Fayette Valley and Waukon by a combined score of 25-1.
Dubuque Wahlert has outscored teams 97-14 over the last 10 games.
What to watch: Two of the better offensive teams in 3A meet in a game that should feature plenty of offense.
Dubuque Wahlert has been among the most productive teams in 3A this season ranking fourth in team batting average (.354), third in home runs (34) and first in runs scored (310).
Solon has been solid offensive itself, ranking 24th in batting average (.312), sixth in home runs Both teams are swinging the bats well in the postseason.
Dubuque Wahlert has out-hit two postseason opponents 24-4 while Solon is hitting .347 as a team and has scored a combined 15 runs in two regional wins.
Tasked with slowing these two red hot offenses will be a pair of standout young pitchers.
Dubuque Wahlert Julia Roth is 13-3 on the season with a 1.92 ERA and 1.16 WHIP and has struck out 80 in 105 2/3 innings.
Roth has allowed three hits and one run while striking out eight in five postseason innings.
Solon eighth-grader Maddyn Gates is 7-4 with a 2.23 ERA and ha struck out 63 in 78 1/3 innings.
Gates tossed 11 1/3 innings in a quarterfinal win over West Delaware while junior Kendall Jensen tossed a six-inning three-hitter with five strikeouts in a 11-1 semifinal win over Monticello.
Class 5A, Region 7
No. 12 Liberty High (23-13) at No. 7 Muscatine (31-6)
When: Tuesday, 7 p.m.
Where: Kent-Stein Park in Muscatine
Top players: Liberty High – Haley Schroeder, Sr., .407 BA, 44 Runs, 6 HR, 24 RBI; Brynlee Slockett, .396 BA, 39 Runs, 4 HR, 31 RBI. Muscatine – Avery Schroeder, Jr., .541 BA, 58 Runs, 22 SB, 16 RBI; Maura Chalupa, 18-3, 1.43 ERA, .90 WHIP, 158 K, 117 1/3 IP.
About the Lightning: Liberty High is making its third regional final appearance in the past four seasons seeking to breakthrough and reach the state tournament for the first time in program history.
The Lightning have been close to a state tournament appearance before, falling to Independence 4-2 in a regional final in 2019 and 1-0 to Cedar Rapids Kennedy in 2020 before a 9-1 loss to Muscatine in last year’s regional title game.
Liberty High enters riding a five-game winning streak after rallying for a 7-6 win over Cedar Rapids Kennedy in the Region 7 semifinals.
The Lightning have a balanced offense with seven players hitting .306 or better led by freshman Kelsey Kaut who is batting a team-leading .432.
Senior Haileigh Smith is hitting .425 with 37 RBI while junior Mischa Reiners is hitting .314 with a team-leading 40 RBI.
About the Muskies: A state semifinalist a year ago Muscatine is seeking a third trip to the state tournament in the past four seasons and second in a row.
The Muskies have been among the most impressive teams in 5A throughout the season and entering the regional title game riding a six-game winning streak that includes four wins over ranked teams and a 5-2 win over City High in the regional semifinals on Saturday.
All six of the losses for Muscatine have come to ranked teams with 3A top-ranked Williamsburg and 5A sixth-ranked Pleasant Valley each downing the Muskies twice.
Muscatine has four players hitting over .400 led by junior Avery Schroeder (.541) and senior Becca Haag (.505) while Kyleia Salyars is hitting .425 and Ysabel Lerma is hitting .414.
Lerman (39), Haag (39) and Salyars (38) have all driven in at least 38 runs and have combined for 35 extra-base hits.
What to watch: The Region 7 title game is a rematch of last year’s regional final won 9-1 by Muscatine.
Liberty High managed just two hits off Muscatine starter Maura Chalupa in the regional final last season as Chalupa struck out eight in 6 2/3 innings.
Chalupa has been among the best in the state this season boasting an 18-3 record with a 1.43 ERA while striking out 158 in 117 1/3 innings.
Liberty High has been excellent offensively all season ranking ninth in 5A in team batting average at .333 and will need to find a way to scratch out some offense against Chalupa.
The good news for Liberty High is that the two players to get hits off Chalupa a year ago (Reiners and senior Kennedy Daugherty) will both be in the lineup on Tuesday.