For the fifth straight year, Frankfort hoisted a Division 4 baseball district title.
Monday's win may have been biggest of them all.
With a young roster, the Panthers stayed alive in the state tournament with a 12-1 semifinal win over Manistee Catholic and then a 4-3 victory over Brethren in the title game.
"This is a pretty big surprise," Panthers coach Mike Zimmerman said. "We started off the season so bad. This is six in a row we've won now. The kids are playing really well."
In the semifinal win, Nolan Nye hit a home run on the first pitch of the game. On the second pitch, Talon Bigley doubled. Brennan Flynn and Matthew Nugent each went 3-for-3 while Nugent had four RBIs. Bigley pitched the win with 14 strikeouts and only four hits allowed.
The championship game was tied 3-3 in the seventh inning when Bigley walked, Flynn doubled and Owen Stratton had an RBI infield single to score Bigley for the winning run.
Flynn finished with two doubles while Stratton had two hits. R.J. Kennis pitched the win with six strikeouts and five hits allowed.
Frankfort will host the regional on Saturday. Buckley will join the Panthers, along with the winner from today's districts at Ellsworth and Glen Lake.
Mancelona will chase its fourth straight district crown today after a 6-3 semifinal win over Charlevoix.
The Ironmen won behind a Craig Conway's five-hitter. He struck out five in seven innings and was 1 for 1 at the plate with two walks and was hit by a pitch.
Charlevoix pitcher Coby Herriman also gave up only five hits, striking out 10.
Isaac Klooster had a two-run single in the fourth that drew the Rayders (17-17) within a run at 4-3 before Mancelona (26-5) added two runs in the seventh.
Harbor Springs also earned a finals spot, beating Boyne City 4-0 on Scott Morse's no-hitter.
Today's district final is slated for a 5:30 p.m. start at East Jordan.
Buckley wins district over host Marion
Buckley won its third straight district title with a 3-0 win over host Marion.
The Bears (18-10) got the win from Evan Chalker with eight strikeouts and one hit allowed. Joel Ledford got the save. At the plate, Dustin Tandy had an RBI hit.
In the semifinals, Buckley came back to beat Forest Area, 7-5.
The Bears trailed 4-2 in the fourth before knotting it up and taking the lead in the fifth. Michael Baldinger had the game-winning hit to score two runs. Chalker got the win in 3.2 innings of relief with nine strikeouts.
Buckley travels to the Frankfort regional on Saturday.
-- Compiled by James Cook and Mike Eckert