TEUTOPOLIS -- Going into the softball playoffs, Shelbyville coach Tony Moll knew his team could disrupt the postseason landscape.
"At the start of regionals, I was asked to describe my team and I said we are a spoiler. If we put it all together, we can play with the best," Moll said.
The Rams (13-15) put it all together in their Class 2A Teutopolis regional semifinal meeting with No. 1-seeded Tuscola (29-3) Tuesday and toppled the Warriors 3-2 in eight innings.
This was the third meeting between the Central Illinois Conference rivals this season and before the game Moll reminded his team the mantra that it is hard to beat a team three times in a season.
"My message was the same between the games with Tuscola and Sullivan. (Shelbyville defeated Sullivan 2-1 in the regional quarterfinals on Monday) We were playing Sullivan for a third time and it is hard to defeat a team three times in a season. Tuscola has beaten us twice (2-1 on April 6 and 3-0 on April 19) and this third time we needed to compete with them," Moll said.
Rams pitcher Joselyn Lewis threw a complete game and limited the Warriors' bats to five hits.
"Joselyn did a fantastic job. She pitched six innings last night against Sullivan and she came back on the mound and was very strong tonight with nine strikeouts and one walk," Moll said. "Our defense was much better and that allowed us to really support Joselyn and her efforts on the mound. We got some key hits down."
Tuscola scored single runs in the second and third innings which the Rams matched with two runs batted in the fourth inning from their No. 8 hitter Natalie Frederick.
In the top of the eighth, Alexis Rohdemann singled to score Allison Schurricht for what would be the winning run for Shelbyville.
"It was a great game and both teams played well. Tuscola is a very well coached team and I have a lot of respect for them and we played well and we played well but we just came out on top," Moll said. "I'm really proud of the girls, I don't think our record reflects how well we can play and how we were playing at the end of the year. They have really embraced the game and I'm super proud of them."
Shelbyville will face the winner between Teutopolis and Pana in the regional championship on Friday at 4:30 p.m. at Teutopolis. The Wooden Shoes and Panthers play in the regional semifinal today at 4:30 p.m.