GOOSE CREEK - The Stratford softball team reached the District 7 title game with another sturdy defensive performance Saturday.
The Knights turned a pair of double plays and pitcher Nikki Linthicum fanned six batters and scattered three hits in Stratford's 2-0 victory over North Augusta on in the Class AAAA playoffs.
Stratford (19-8) will host Wednesday's district final against either North Augusta or Conway. The Knights need one win to Lower State final four tournament, which begins May 10. North Augusta (14-10) meets Conway in an elimination game on Monday.
In the District V tournament, Wando advanced to the title game with a 12-10 win in 10 innings at Lexington on Friday night. The Warriors, who got a home run and three RBIs from Brooke Gilbert against Lexington, will host the title game Wednesday.
Stratford coach Debra Tolar said pitching and defense were the big factors for her team, which beat Colleton County by 2-1 in the first round.
"The first team scored just one run, and today they didn't score any," Tolar said. "Our biggest problem today was leaving too many men on base."
The Knights manufactured a pair of runs in the first two innings without the benefit of a hit. Stratford loaded the bases in the first inning on a pair of walks and a fielder's choice but could only score when Kayli Miles swiped home on a throw back to the pitcher.
In the second, Stratford scored its other run on a fielding error.
Linthicum improved to 12-5. North Augusta's Meghan Whitfield took the loss despite giving up just four hits.
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