WMBD/WYZZ-TV - EAST PEORIA, Ill. - A trip to state could be a short drive for East Peoria but it's been a long wait.
Especially for star pitcher Sarah Finck, who has been one of the top players in central Illinois for four years but has never been able to get her team to the state finals.
The Raiders are hoping to change that Monday.
"I want to do it for Sarah," said freshman catcher Ashley Emert. "I've been catching her all year. It's been a really good experience. I want to do it for Sarah."
Emert homered in East Peoria's 4-2 win over Metamora Saturday. The victory gave EP its first ever sectional championship and moved the Raiders within a win of playing at state on their home field.
"We definitely try and play behind Sarah," said senior Ally Watson. "She's awesome and we have to play awesome behind her. That's what gets us through it."
East Peoria will play Manteno in the Normal Super-Sectional Monday for a trip to the Class 3A state tournament.
"Last year was exciting. This year is even more exciting," said freshman slugger Remi Ferguson, who homered in both sectional games last week. "I'm so glad I can do it for sarah, for the team. It's just exciting."