The Freedom High softball team's season ended June 1 with a 4-1 loss to James Logan in the North Coast Section Division I championship game at Saint Mary's College in Moraga.
But the Falcons surprised most observers just by making it to the title game.
Freedom, which won the Bay Valley Athletic League title, entered the Division I playoffs as the No. 5 seed and were on the same side of the bracket as No. 1 Amador Valley. After a 6-5 quarterfinal road win over No. 4 Castro Valley on May 24 in which they scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning, the Falcons were in line to face Amador Valley.
But after San Ramon Valley upset the Dons 4-1, the Falcons got to host the Wolves in the semifinals. After falling behind 1-0 in the first inning, Freedom scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run by Emma Ryan and a two-run blast by Raegan Ternes.
That was enough offense for pitcher Maddie Williams, who shut out San Ramon Valley over the last six innings and finished with nine strikeouts and just one walk.
The victory moved the Falcons into the Division I championship game for the first time 2010, and the opponent was the same as it was four years ago -- James Logan.
Freedom threatened to score in the first inning but a runner was thrown out at home plate by Colts' outfielder Alexis Mattos to keep the game scoreless.
James Logan scored three runs in the second inning as Tayler Peters doubled to left center to bring home Caley Bonansea and Melina Rodriguez, who had reached on hard hit singles. Deann Garza followed with a chopper over third base that brought Peters home, and the Colts led 3-0.
Freedom scored its run in the top of the sixth inning and Adrienne Davenport and Ternes combined for four of the Falcons' six hits off Logan pitcher RaeAnn Garza.
Williams finished the year with a 19-5-1 record and a 1.61 ERA in 148 innings. Lyvie Ilayan led Freedom's offense with a .400 batting average, 30 RBIs and 22 runs scored.