Unwavering desire to be champions carries Illinois District 17 to Senior League World Series crown

The Illinois District 17 softball players celebrate winning the Senior League Softball World Series championship Sunday night with a 5-4 victory over Texas in Roxana, Del. | Photo courtesy Tina Bunte

ROXANA, Del. — The Illinois District 17 softball team never flinched. Twice during Sunday’s Senior League World Series championship game, the team from Little River-Academy, Texas, erased one-run deficits, only to see Illinois regain the lead each time. Then, in the eighth inning of a tie game, Texas put two runners in scoring position with…

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District 17 all-stars on verge of World Series crown after pair of shutouts leads to title-game berth

Quincy Notre Dame's Caitlin Bunte delivers a pitch during action at the Senior League World Series in Roxana, Del. | Photo courtesy Tina Bunte

ROXANA, Del. — One more to glory. The Illinois District 17 softball team, composed of players throughout West-Central and Central Illinois, is one victory away from a Senior League World Series championship. A fitting winner-take-all finale will decide it. The Land of Lincolners will face the Southwest Region champions from Texas at 6 p.m. Sunday…

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Extra-inning victory pushes Illinois District 17 softball squad to top of pool at World Series

The Illinois District 17 softball team poses for a picture before a game during the Senior League World Series in Roxana, Del. | Submitted photo

ROXANA, Del. — One miscue won’t derail the Illinois District 17 softball team’s mission to win a World Series title. Leading Calgary, Alberta, by two runs in the sixth inning Wednesday at Lyons Field, the Land of Lincolners allowed two unearned runs as a fielding error contributed to the Canadian uprising. A pickoff ended the…

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Momentum-swinging plays send Raiders home with regional title and another chance to play at The Backyard

The Quincy Notre Dame softball team won the Class 2A Canton Regional championship Friday night with a 10-0 victory over Canton. | Submitted photo

CANTON, Ill. — Caitlin Bunte needed one pitch to erase a threat and one swing to start an onslaught.  It all took place in a matter of minutes. “It’s what she’s done all year long. She made great adjustments in the circle and then comes up and hits a blast,” Quincy Notre Dame softball coach…

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QND softball team’s ability to battle and rally will serve it well in postseason

Quincy Notre Dame sophomore Caitlin Bunte connects on one of her two home runs during Saturday's game against Tolono Unity at The Backyard. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — Eric Orne isn’t shying away from putting the Quincy Notre Dame softball team in high-leverage situations before the postseason arrives. “These are championship Saturdays for us,” the veteran skipper said after the Raiders suffered a 7-6 loss to Tolono Unity on Saturday at The Backyard. “These are the kind of teams and the…

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Perfect 10s: Raiders improve to 10-0 with 10-run rout of Cyclones behind Bunte’s no-hitter

Quincy Notre Dame sophomore left-hander Caitlin Bunte delivers a pitch during Monday's game against Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin at The Backyard. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — Caitlin Bunte didn’t expect a blustery wind blowing straight out to center field Monday afternoon to alter anything she needed to do in the pitcher’s circle. “If I’m hitting my spots, even with the wind blowing, I knew we’d be fine,” she said. Then the Quincy Notre Dame softball team’s left-handed hurler saw…

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Photo gallery: QND softball team stays undefeated with five-inning victory over SHG

Quincy Notre Dame third baseman Brooke Boden connects and drives the ball during Monday's game against Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin at The Backyard. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — Caitlin Bunte was unhittable in the circle and unstoppable at the plate. The Quincy Notre Dame sophomore tossed a five-inning no-hitter in leading the QND softball team to a 10-0 victory over Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin on Monday at The Backyard. Bunte also belted two home runs as the Raiders improved to 10-0. Muddy…

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Bunte quiets QHS bats as QND softball team rolls to victory in crosstown showdown

The Quincy Notre Dame infielders get ready to give the ball to pitcher Caitlin Bunte, second from left, before the fifth inning of Wednesday night's game against Quincy High School at the QHS field. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — Eric Orne’s assessment was equally accurate and understated. “Caitlin does a lot of things for us,” the Quincy Notre Dame softball coach said. Orne was complimenting the Raiders’ left-handed ace, Caitlin Bunte, who had just dominated rival Quincy High School with a strong effort both on the mound and at bat. Bunte pitched…

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QND softball team ready to chase another regional title with potent lineup still intact

Quincy Notre Dame softball coach Eric Orne, right, is entering his 26th season at the helm, and he will have an experienced senior class featuring Laela Hernandez-Jones, left. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — Eric Orne says the Quincy Notre Dame softball team is more interested in the long haul, rather than immediate dividends. “We hope to be playing our best ball in May,” said Orne, beginning his 26th campaign as QND’s head coach. “We’ve got a strong schedule designed to help us get ready for the…

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