RICHMOND — A little jittery and a little rusty, the Richmond softball team struggled to find a rhythm in the early going of its Western D semifinal Friday against Buckfield.

But once the Bobcats got rolling they never stalled.

Kelsie Obi went 3 for 4 with three RBIs and Jamie Plummer settled down after a shaky start to lead the Bobcats past the Bucks 12-3.

“I don’t think we came in focused,” Richmond coach Rick Coughlin said. “Once we started hitting the ball we got back to playing how we knew we could play.”

Top-seeded Richmond (15-0) advanced to its third consecutive Western D final. It will play No. 2 Greenville (13-2) at 3 p.m. Tuesday at St. Joseph’s College. Greenville beat No. 3 Rangeley 8-2 on Friday.

Payton Johnson went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and Kelsea Anair had three hits, including a double, to power Richmond. Noell Acord also went 2 for 4 with a double.

Plummer allowed three runs in the second inning but retired the final 11 hitters she faced. She struck out two, walked one and allowed seven hits.

“We knew coming into it that they had some momentum,” Plummer said. “We knew they could hit the ball. We got a little bit of a wakeup call.”

Richmond beat Buckfield 13-1 and 25-2 in the regular season. The Bobcats jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning and appeared headed toward another easy win, but the No. 4 Bucks (6-11) responded with three runs in the top of the second.

Liz Strout and Dakota Warren had RBI singles to spark the comeback.

“(Buckfield) was prepared,” Obi said. “They came out ready and we were a little off. We knew we had to get things going.”

Richmond did just that in the home half of the second inning.

After Buckfield left fielder Arrabine Dunn made a diving catch and completed a double play with a force out at second, Obi came up and lined a two-run single to center to put Richmond ahead 6-3.

“It was nerve-racking because we had a lot people on base and all I was thinking was ‘I have to get them home,’ ” Obi said. “It felt good to do that. It felt good to get those hits.”

Richmond plated another run in the third on a Johnson RBI single before breaking the game open with a five-run fourth.

Plummer, Johnson and Ciarra Lancaster each had RBI singles in the inning.

“We hadn’t played a game in a week so it was nice to go out and finish strong,” said Plummer, who went 2 for 4 to help her own cause.

Buckfield went quietly the rest of the way, recording just two hits from the fourth inning on.

Alannah Knox went 2 for 3 with a double while Stout had two hits and scored a run to pace the Bucks.

Bill Stewart — 621-5640

[email protected]

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