The EHT 12U Tornadoes softball team went down to the Babe Ruth World Series in Florida intent on winning a championship, and after a huge 3-0 win over Colorado tonight, the New Jersey state and Mid-Atlantic Regional champions are just three wins away from capturing a World Series crown.

EHT will take on a very tough Louisiana team — the top seed that hasn’t allowed a run yet through four games of pool play and the quarterfinals — in the semifinals on Thursday at 11 a.m. The winner of that game takes on the winner of No. 3 seed Hawaii vs. No. 2 seed Buffalo (N.Y.) in a best-of-three championship series this weekend.

“We played a really good team from Colorado, and won 3-0. I think we’ve played really well and at about the level we expected to play,” said head coach John D’Agostino, father of Isabella D’Agostino, one of the other pitchers for the Tornadoes. “We’ve played our best except for one game, and we have a really tough one tomorrow, so we’ll see how we do.”The Tornadoes went 3-1 in pool play, then brought the pitching and defense in the quarterfinals against Colorado as Elianna Meola twirled a gem.

This year’s team is made up of many of the girls who made it to the 10U Babe Ruth World Series two years ago, but that team wasn’t able to make it out of pool play. Players and coaches alike said before this year’s tournament that they were just happy to be there last time, but this time they are focused on trying to win it all.

“Our pitching and defense — especially today — has been spectacular. We only had three base runners all game, and we got them all in. We did what we had to do to score,” D’Agostino said. “Elianna pitched the whole game today and she did fantastic. We have an injury, so we only have 10 girls playing right now.”

“The girls were super fired up today,” added assistant coach Dave Del Re, dad of Mary Del Re. “This is about the most energy we’ve seen from them all year and they really played great. It was a lot of fun.”

The coaches said the girls have plenty of confidence heading into the semifinal round.

“Anything can happen,” Del Re said. “We knew on the first day we were one of the best teams here. I didn’t know exactly how we would end up, but we knew we’d have a chance if we played our best.”

The team has also been enjoying its time off the field.

“We’ve been trying to let them have as much fun as they can, but we told them we’re here to win,” Del Re said.

“One night during pool play we went to a professional softball game, and that game had a rain delay so our girls were in the parking lot having a dance party,” D’Agostino said. “So, they were doing all their dance moves, showing all the other teams, it was pretty cool. We told them that was their fun for the week, now it’s time to get focused again.”

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