They had to wait an extra day because of a rain-out, but it turns out the wait was well worth it.
Thanks to a well-placed hit in the home-half of the seventh inning, the Viola Lady Longhorns punched their way to the Class 1A state semi-final round with a tight 3-2 victory over Weiner May 17 at Viola City Park.
Viola's clash with Lockesburg for the right to play in Bogle Park on the University of Arkansas campus was played after the press deadline for this issue of The News. Check next week's paper for complete results.
With one out and the game tied at 2-all in the bottom of the seventh inning, Viola's Heather Simmons dropped a looping hit into right field, just past second base, that scored Dedra Johnston, giving the lady Horns (28-6) a thrilling win via a walk-off single.
Viola jumped in front 2-0 in the third as Leslie Barker singled and then scored on a three-bagger from Johnston.
Taylor Griggs then plated Johnston from third on a groundout to give the homestanding Lady Longhorns a 2-0 advantage.
The Lady Cardinals responded with a solo homer from Tosha Geror in the top of the fourth and an RBI-double by Kaitlyn Junyor in the top of the sixth.
But it was Viola that had the last say, winning the contest in dramatic fashion in the seventh.
With one out in the stanza, Johnston singled to left and then moved to second on a well-placed bunt hit from Griggs, giving Simmons runners at first and second.
And she took full advantage, driving in Johnston for the victory.
In the state opener, Viola pounded Kirby 11-2 May 14.
The Lady Trojans held a 1-0 lead for the first few frames, but the Lady Horns racked up seven runs in the fifth to grab control.
Johnston was the winner, giving up two earned runs on five hits and four walks. She struck out seven.
Leslie Barker had three ribbies, while Simmons and Ashley Newton drove in two apiece. Johnston drove in one run.
For the second straight year, the Lady Longhorns added the regional tournament title to their district tournament championship.
This year's regional title win came courtesy of a 10-1 victory over Hillcrest May 11 at Viola City Park.
Johnston, the Regional MVP, earned the win, striking out nine while giving up just three hits to the Lady Screamin' Eagles.
Hillcrest scored its lone run in the first and after that, it was all Viola.
The Lady Horns broke things open with six runs in the third inning. Viola then added a run in the fourth and three more in the sixth.
Barker slammed a triple for one of her three hits in the game. She also drove in three.
Johnston had three hits, including a run-scoring double.
Griggs also had a double in the game.