WEST JORDAN — Tyler Nelson lived out a dream Thursday evening.
Nelson drove in the winning run through the left gap with the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh inning to help Maple Mountain rally by Orem, 5-4, to advance to the best-of-three championship series at Cate Field on the Salt Lake Community College Jordan Campus.
Nelson went 2-for-3, including the game-winning RBI single that ended a dramatic rally for the Tigers, the No. 1 overall seed that scored four runs in the top of the seventh after the Golden Eagles led by as much as 4-0.
Winning pitcher Cole Rollins allowed just one run over the first three innings with two strikeouts for Maple Mountain (20-10).
Tanner Finch was 2-for-3 to lead Orem (21-10), and Taylor Gill smacked a grand slam.
Maple Mountain will face crosstown rival Spanish Fork in the best-of-three championship series Friday and Saturday. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. MT, with a second game Saturday at noon. If necessary, the third and final contest will take place at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, or immediately following the second game.
In Class 6A, American Fork held off Bingham 8-5 in Thursday's bracket 1 finale to advance to face Region 4 rival Pleasant Grove in the best-of-three championship.
The Cavemen and Vikings will open Friday at 6 p.m. MT at UCCU Ballpark at Utah Valley University in Orem. First pitch for the second game of the series is scheduled for Saturday at noon.
In 5A softball, Spanish Fork took the opening game of the championship series, 14-3 over Mountain Ridge. The Sentinels must win Friday's first game at noon to force a winner-take-all contest immediately following the contest.
Riverton took a 1-0 lead in the 6A championship series with a 5-4 win over Bingham. Like the 5A contest, first pitch for Friday's Game 2 is scheduled for noon MT at the Spanish Fork Complex.