The Admirals did that with a one-sided win in which they scored all of their runs in the first two innings to take a 7-0 lead that Somerset never threatened thanks to Dustin Sparrow, who pitched six effective innings for the win.
"That was the key to the game was getting on them early, and Dustin (did) an excellent job of pitching," Danville coach Paul Morse said.
The early offensive bursts were all Danville would need to clinch its third regional title and advance to a semi-state series next week against 11th Region champion Lexington Catholic. The best-of-three series at Henry Clay begins Monday.
Danville also defeated Somerset in the regional final and lost to Lexington Catholic in a semi-state series three years ago, making the players who were on both that team and this one the first in school history to win two regional titles.
"They've worked so hard. There is definitely some talent there or they wouldn't be able to do the things they do, but it is a group that has just worked so hard over the years and made themselves into very good high school players," he said.
Catcher Jeff Embree, another senior, said their work as a unit began in 2006.
"We've been working for it since we won the last one," Embree said. "I'm just overwhelmed to have it."
The early innings of the title game couldn't have been scripted better for Danville (27-11), which chased two pitchers during a five-run second inning.
"That's how you want to draw a championship game up, to get on them early," Morse said. "Especially a team like Somerset that's really big on the running game, double-stealing, hit-and-runs, all that kind of stuff, because it takes them out of their game."
Worst-case scenario for Somerset
And what was ideal for the Admirals was the worst-case scenario for Somerset (23-6), which had beaten Danville 7-2 seven weeks ago in the 12th Region All "A" Classic final and compiled the region's best record.
The Briar Jumpers went deep into their bullpen far earlier than coach Phillip Grundy would have liked, and Danville made starter Steven Alexander and reliever Scott Spears pay for every mistake before Jared Price gave them 4 2/3 shutout innings.
Michael Evans started the scoring with a two-out, two-run home run to right field in the first inning, and the first three Danville batters reached base in the second to set the table for a big inning.
Jeff Embree singled home a run for the fourth hit off Alexander, who was then replaced. Spears' first delivery was a wild pitch that scored a run, two more runs scored on the Jumpers' second error of the inning and the Admirals finished their scoring with a sacrifice fly by Andrew Lasure off Price.
"You get on a roll and you just keep going," Embree said. "You hit that groove just like when you're pitching."
The Admirals' roll made life easier for Sparrow, who improved to 8-0 in only his third start of the season and easily the most important of his career.
"Getting those first seven runs was just really a good cushion to get us by for the rest of the game," Sparrow said.
Storm Wilson scored Somerset's first run after leading off the third inning with a double, and David Van Hook did likewise after a leadoff triple in the seventh, but that was all the Jumpers could get out of the four hits and four walks allowed by Sparrow.
"Coach told me to go as hard as I can for as long as I can ... and I just went out there and tried to do my best as long as I could," Sparrow said.
"What I was hoping for Dustin was to give us four or five strong (innings)," Morse said.
Sparrow escaped trouble in the sixth inning, when he returned after a lightning delay -Â there were two weather delays totaling 31 minutes -Â but he was finished after giving up Van Hook's long triple to open the seventh.
"My arm was done," he said.
Duran Elmore, who pitched two innings the night before to earn the win in Danville's semifinal victory over Southwestern, retired three straight batters to end the game, closing the game with back-to-back strikeouts just as he had done on Wednesday.
"Coming into this year, before we used him more as a starter, that was the role we used him in a lot," Morse said. "He still loves being the guy in those pressure situations."
Elmore, Embree and Evans each had two of the Admirals' eight hits.
12th Region Tournament
At Pulaski County Championship
Steven Alexander, Scott Spears (2), Jared Price (2) and Storm Wilson. Dustin Sparrow, Duran Elmore (7) and Jeff Embree. W-Sparrow. L-Alexander. 2B-Wilson (S), Elmore (D), David Van Hook (S). 3B-Van Hook (S). HR-Michael Evans (D).
Duran Elmore, Danville; Jeff Embree, Danville; Michael Evans, Danville; Aaron Hampton, Southwestern; Matthew Honchel, Mercer County; Darrell King, McCreary Central; Eric Manning, Somerset; Bud Morton, West Jessamine; Tanner Perkins, Rockcastle County; Kody Ross, Boyle County; Taylor Sears, Somerset; Dustin Sparrow, Danville; David Van Hook, Somerset; Aaron Watts, McCreary Central.Somerset00100012-4-4Danville250000x7-8-2