WESTFIELD TWP. — By the time the LaGrange Division II Sectional final between the Cloverleaf and Holy Name softball teams gets going today, Shannon Mohney will have had more than 52 hours to think about her at-bat.
Rain suspended the game and a ton of Colts momentum Saturday. The Green Wave was up 5-2 but faced a mountain of trouble with Mohney up and the bases loaded with no one out in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Whether Mohney fretted over that at-bat remains to be seen, but the senior insisted she will be ready by the first pitch.
“I probably won’t,” she said. “But when the game starts, I’ll be freaking out a little bit. It’ll be important to keep momentum going and keep things rolling.”
In a game where momentum was all or nothing for both teams, Cloverleaf (8-18) certainly had it before Mother Nature dumped yet another heaping helpful of the wet stuff in Westfield Township.
Thanks to a big three-run triple by Becca Knauss in the fourth inning, Holy Name (10-6) was up 5-0 after the top of the fifth.
Amber Opincar (4-1) was throwing off-speed pitch after off-speed pitch and Cloverleaf was popping it up or grounding it into the dirt.
Opincar had a no-hitter through four.
“The girl wasn’t throwing hard or throwing many strikes,” Colts coach John Carmigiano said. “But I thought the at-bats were starting to get better as the game went on. It was a slow start.”
Things changed in the bottom of the fifth, when Cloverleaf scratched across an unearned run on a throwing error and added another on a RBI single from Hallee Smith.
That got the ball rolling, as the Colts’ Sierra Pickett relieved left-hander Kelsen Lewarchick and promptly struck out the side to start the sixth.
Knauss relieved Opincar and sandwiched walks to Pickett and Sara Meckley around a hit-by-pitch to Brooke Ball before the skies opened up.
“We were a little impatient at the plate,” Carmigiano said. “We knew we could put runs up against them. It was good to see that we got a couple. That will give our kids confidence.”
Carmigiano, who rarely gives in to the elements, was in agreement when the game was called and not just because maintenance was out of Diamond Dry.
“I think it was a good wake-up call for us,” he said. “Enough went our way here before the break that we can build on it and hopefully come out and play hard. I was fine that we got to where we got. I feel good about our chances.”
Let’s Play Two
Fans will get their fair share of softball today as Cloverleaf will close out its regular season with a non-conference game against Elyria Catholic immediately following the sectional final with Holy Name.
Contact Brad Bournival at firstname.lastname@example.org.