CONNERSVILLE – There’s something that’s always true in sports – great players make great plays.

Greensburg’s Melina Wilkison, an Ohio State University recruit, stepped to the plate with two Pirates on and none out and her team trailing Franklin County 2-1 in the top of the third inning. Wilkison sent Michaela Ferman’s second offering over the fence in left-center field for a 3-run homer. Pirate freshman Hermione Robinson then held the Lady Wildcats in check as the 4-2 score sent Greensburg into the Connersville Sectional finals.

Ferman settled down as well, not allowing another run the rest of the way. Greensburg put seven runners on after the home run and FC had six baserunners across the last five at-bats.

“We were able to create some chances to score but ultimately couldn’t get a clutch hit,” said FC coach Alex McCool. “We also gave Greensburg second chances, committing three errors.”

The Pirates struck first as leadoff Wilkison slapped a double to start the game and Taylor Cooney followed with an RBI single to left.

The Wildcats (17-14) executed well in the bottom of the inning to tie things up. Leadoff hitter Maci Lake walked and stole second base, going to third on the catcher’s errant throw. Kassidy Schell laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt that gave her an RBI when Lake came home.

Ferman struck out the side in the top of the second, allowing the offense to break the tie in the bottom of the frame.

Bree Bischoff led off with a double to center. One out later, it was Kiersten Schell going opposite field with a run-scoring single to right. She was eventually stranded at third, though FC now led 2-1.

The last two hitters in Greensburg’s lineup each walked, Kayla Kelso and Allison Ripperger drawing the free passes. After Wilkison’s bomb, Ferman set down Cooney and Liz Pavy looking; after a third walk in the frame, Robinson grounded out to third.

The third was FC’s best chance to get back in the game. Lake reached on an infield error and again stole second. Ka. Schell was hit by a pitch to put two runners on. Josie Rolfes advanced the runners with a groundout to short and Ferman walked to load the bases. Bischoff then lined one into the glove of Cooney at shortstop, who flipped to third to double Lake off the base.

Greensburg got a player to second base in each of the next three innings but Ferman got a flyout, comebacker and strikeout, respectively, to end those threats.

Meanwhile, Robinson was retiring eight consecutive Wildcats. Ferman’s walk in the bottom of six snapped that string and Bischoff singled with a deflection off Robinson. However, a groundout and punchout ended the frame.

The Bucs tried to add on in the seventh when Kelso singled, Wilkison was walked intentionally and Pavy drew an unintentional pass. Cleanup hitter Emma DeWeese then flied out to right.

With one more opportunity, designated player Anne Becker singled to center and was replaced by courtesy runner Emma Stadtmiller. She moved to second but a flyout and strikeout ended the contest.

Ferman fanned eight in the complete-game loss while the winning Robinson set down five.

“This was a great improvement from when we took the field two years ago and we have a lot to look forward to,” McCool said of the season.

Seniors departing are Kloe Bolos, Camryn Brewer and Kiya Rains.

“They’ve done great things for our program and we wish them well,” said the coach.

Greensburg defeated Connersville in Saturday’s championship and faced Scottsburg in the regional Tuesday.