Yesterday's Class 4A East regional softball semifinal between visiting Arundel and Chesapeake-Anne Arundel was scoreless through five innings.
One swing from Chesapeake's Kelly Hickman changed that.
The junior second baseman pulled a two-run homer to left field in the sixth, which propelled the No. 3 and defending state champion Cougars to a 3-0 win.
The Cougars (20-2) will host Broadneck - a 9-0 winner over Glen Burnie in yesterday's other semifinal - at 4 p.m. in a rematch of last year's regional championship and this year's Anne Arundel County championship, won by the Bruins, 4-2.
"It was an inside pitch, and I just turned on it. ... I came around second base with a big smile because I was so excited. It was a big relief," Hickman said.
Cougars junior Lauren Gibson allowed two hits, striking out 14. She also started the sixth-inning rally.
Leading off, she ended up on third base after stretching a bloop to left field into a double before advancing to third on a throwing error.
After Hickman's homer, Angela Yannone doubled and scored on Amanda Montgomery's groundout to short.
Arundel (14-6) stayed close with some clutch pitching from sophomore Kayla Martinez and timely defense. The Cougars twice had runners called out on plays at the plate before breaking through in the sixth.
No. 5 Franklin 20, Patapsco 0 -- Jordan Eades hit a grand slam and reliever Mary Sobota had two doubles to power the Indians (21-0) past the Patriots in Class 3A North. Franklin hosts Catonsville in today's championship at 1:30 p.m.
No. 14 C. Milton Wright 5, Perry Hall 1 -- Anjelica Appold's two-run double highlighted the four-run fifth inning that helped the Mustangs (13-8) get by the Gators (16-4) in a Class 4A North regional semifinal. Winning pitcher Brittany Walter struck out five and allowed four hits. Perry Hall's Kelsey Zeglin had a triple and an RBI.
Sparrows Point 8, Pikesville 2 -- Gabrielle Antalffy had a double and a triple and drove in two runs to lead the Pointers to a Class 1A North regional semifinal victory over the Panthers. Winning pitcher Kara Malvaso struck out 12.
Seniors John Hodges and Brody Kean led host No. 6 Northeast to an 8-5 victory over No. 5 North Harford in the Class 3A quarterfinals in Pasadena.
Rain earlier this week and complications from that pushed the game back to yesterday.
Northeast (18-4), the Anne Arundel County champion, which had not played a home playoff game since 2004, will host No. 14 Fallston (15-6) at 4 p.m. today in the Class 3A East semifinals. Fallston advanced with a 4-1 win over Annapolis on Wednesday.
Yesterday, Hodges relieved a shaky Kean in the second inning with the Eagles down 4-0 and shut down the Hawks (15-6).
Hodges shut out the Hawks until the seventh when he gave up a run on a double by Jake Barben.
Though Kean struggled on the mound, he did well batting, hitting a two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth to give the Eagles a 7-4 lead. Catcher Josh Rickmon's single had put the Eagles on top by 5-4 right before Kean's homer.
No. 3 Archbishop Curley 6, Mount St. Joseph 5 -- Norm Cushing's bunt in the seventh scored Keith Fritz and lifted the host Friars (20-6) over the Gaels in the consolation round of the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference tournament. Curley hosts St. Paul's at 4 p.m. today.
No. 4 C. Milton Wright 6, Kenwood 2 -- Mike Devecchio drove in three runs as the Mustangs (17-4) beat the Blue Birds (14-4) in a Class 4A North regional semifinal.
St. Vincent Pallotti 5, St. Mary's 4 -- Sam Stefannelli tripled in the bottom of the seventh to score P.J. Martindale and lift the host Panthers (17-12) over the Saints (12-11) in a MIAA B Conference tournament quarterfinal. The Panthers face Boys' Latin in a semifinal tomorrow.
Marriotts Ridge 4, Mount Hebron 0 -- Mitchell Smith's RBI double in the fifth helped the host Mustangs (16-5) advance in Class 2A South. Marriotts Ridge hosts Calvert in today's regional final at 1 p.m.
Towson 11, Hereford 4 -- Sarah Clemmens scored four goals to power the host Generals (12-2) past the Bulls in Class 3A-2A North. Towson hosts Annapolis in tomorrow's state semifinal.
Sun reporters contributed to this article.