Oak Glen moves forward

NEW MANCHESTER – The Oak Glen softball team put the finishing touches on the second game to capture the Region 1, Section 1 title by a 20-9 score Thursday at the Field of Dreams.

The win made the Golden Bears the host for the Region 1 semifinal game at 5 p.m. next Thursday. They will play the section 2 winner that saw Roanoke and Ritchie County playing each other.

It was an emotional win for veteran Oak Glen coach Michelle McHaffie, who has been at the helm for six years. She announced earlier that she was retiring from coaching when the 2013 season ends, and this was the first section title for the Lady Bears in the six years McHaffie served as head coach.

“Our girls hit the ball hard in this second game,” McHaffie said after it was finally over. “I’ve heard the cliche that hitting is contagious and that was true of us yesterday, especially in the last innings of both games.

“Our girls like a faster pitcher so they were able to get to Abbey Pratt and the more we hit the more confident we got.”

The Golden Bears had scored four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning of the first game Wednesday to win 10-9 in dramatic fashion. Then, after giving up five first inning runs to start the second game, they came back to rock the Red Riders were ahead by a commanding 19-7 score when the game was halted because of darkness.

Oak Glen scored seven runs in the top of the seventh inning before the game was suspended. But they weren’t done scoring in that inning. The Lady Bears had winning pitcher Jordan Cunningham on second base with an RBI double and there were two outs when the game was suspended.

First batter up when the game resumed last night was McKelti McGaffic, whose slap hit single up the middle plated Cunningham with the 20th run.

Weir High went down fighting in the bottom of the seventh, scoring two runs. Jillian Karavanic led off with a walk and Samantha Tate’s grounder was misplayed. An Allison Fuccy single brought Karavanic home and Tate scored when Meikka Buffo, who had a home run in the game, was safe on another Oak Glen error.

However, Cunningham settled down and got the next two batters, one on a ground out and the other with a strikeout.

Oak Glen freshman Maryssa Durante was the winning pitcher in the first game Wednesday and started the second game, but gave way to Cunningham after the Red Riders scored five runs in the first inning. Cunningham, who gave up four runs on eight hits was the second game winner.

Pratt absorbed the loss for Weir.

Oak Glen 20, Weir High 9

Oak Glen 104 133 8 – 20 22 3

Weir High 510 010 2 – 9 12 5

OAK GLEN: Durante (1K, 1HP), Cunningham (1, WP, 1K, 4BB) and Crane. Andrews 5S, 3R, 4RBI; Young 3S, 2R RBI; Crane 2S, 2B, 2RBI; Cunningham S, 2D, 3R, 4RBI; Pryor 2S, 2R, 2RBI; Murray 2S, 2RBI, 2R; Vega 2S 3R, 2RBIMcGaffic S, 2R, RBI; Patterson S, R.

WEIR HIGH: Pratt (LP, 3BB, 2K), DiBacco (6, 0K, 2BB,), Pratt and Buffo. McLaughlin 2S, 2R, RBI; Buffo HR, R, 2RBI; Drizake S, R; Rosnick S, R, RBI; Tate 2S; Fuccy 2S; Rice 2S.