GATES MILLS — Hillsdale’s season of dreams came to an end in heartbreaking fashion Friday afternoon.
Tiffin Calvert’s Caden Otterbacher stroked a game-winning single in the bottom of the seventh inning as the Senecas rallied for a 9-8 win in the Division IV regional championship game at Gilmour Academy.
The Falcons (25-5) scored five runs in the top of the first inning. Jack Fickes belted a two-run home run, followed by an Ethan Goodwin solo shot. Jake Hoverstock added an RBI-single and later scored on a Calvert error.
The Senecas responded with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first and single runs in the second and third to make it 5-4.
Hillsdale scored two in the top of the fourth. Nick Kandel drew a one-out walk, moved to second on a Fickes single and scored on Goodwin’s double. Fickes would score on Caden Fickes’ single to left to make it 7-4.
Calvert answered in the bottom of the inning, scoring twice to make it 7-6.
Hillsdale added a run in the top of the sixth when Jack Fickes walked and scored on Caden Fickes’ double, but Calvert tied it with two runs in the bottom of the sixth before Otterbacher’s game-winner in the seventh.
Goodwin, Jack Fickes and Caden Fickes each had two hits and two RBIs for the Falcons. Jack Fickes scored three runs, while Kandel scored a pair of runs. Max Vesper added a pair of base hits for the Falcons.
Nick Palm and Garrett Spaun each had three hits for Calvert.
The Senecas will play either Antwerp or Van Wert Lincolnview in the state semifinals at 1 p.m. Thursday at Canal Park in Akron.