SOFTBALL: Warwick stymies Hempfield - LancasterOnline: Sports

SOFTBALL: Warwick stymies Hempfield

Knights’ playoff hopes dashed, 4-3

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Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012 11:38 pm | Updated: 7:03 pm, Thu Sep 12, 2013.

Its grail was within reach, figuratively, just beyond the outstretched hands of the Hempfield softball team.

And then it was gone.

Karlie Watson lined a 10th-inning single to left field, Cassidy Godber trotted home and Warwick eliminated Hempfield from L-L playoff consideration 4-3, Monday night in Lititz.

The loss, combined with Penn Manor's 16-2 victory over McCaskey earlier in the day, delivered Section One's second L-L playoff berth to the Comets (10-6 L-L Section One).

Poised to play another day, the Black Knights (8-7, 10-9 overall), grabbed their first lead of the night as Emily Johnson took Warwick starter Tess Eckman over the left field fence in the eighth inning.

"The momentum changed, a lot," said Knights coach Cathy Riggs. "And then … "

Then the Warriors (13-2, 14-4) clawed back on Ashley Tshudy's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the inning, plating Watson who had doubled.

Playing under the international tiebreaker in the 10th inning, Godber, the No. 9 batter of the inning, took her place at second base and was quickly sacrificed to third by Lacey Lefever. Bringing Watson to the plate.

"I was actually thinking about a safety squeeze there," Warriors coach Don Miller shared.

"I said something to Cass and she said, 'Aw, let her hit' and I was like, you're right."

Watson drilled the first pitch she saw from Rachel Herman. Cass knows best.

"I just wanted to get my bat on the ball," Watson said. "I wasn't going to swing at anything that wasn't right where I wanted it. It was right down the middle. Right (in the) perfect spot."

"Karlie has been pretty consistent all year long," said Miller. "She's striking the ball hard."

Backs to the wall, the Black Knights overcame Warwick's early 2-0 advantage on Aubrey Hartman's RBI single in the fourth and Zoey Schneck's steal of home - on a delayed double steal with Annie Hartman - in the fifth.

The Warriors jumped out on Alex Condie's second-inning single and Watson's third-inning knock.

Watson was 3 for 5 for the day and made solid contact in four of the five appearances.

The Knights missed a golden opportunity in their half of the 10th, loading the bases with no one out.

But Lexi Scott bunted into a force at home for the first out. Aubrey Hartman (3-for-5) hit a comebacker to winning pitcher Lacey Lefever for another force at the plate and Lefever induced Brianna Neal to ground out to end the threat.

"Everybody did what was asked of them," Riggs offered. "We just needed that little bit more."

dbyrne@lnpnews.com

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