Panthers' luck 7 in second downs Spartans

April 07, 2003|by BILL STERNER / Staff Correspondent

HANCOCK - Lightning struck twice for the Hancock softball team in its game against McConnellsburg on Friday.

Playing in a steady drizzle with the temperature dropping, freshman pitcher Adrienne Kesecker worked out of two late jams to lift the Panthers to a carbon copy 8-6 win over the Spartans.

Hancock downed McConnellsburg by the same score last week.

As far as McConnellsburg coach Craig Elbin was concerned, the story of the game remained the same.

"The game at our place came down to one big inning and then them killing our rally," Elbin said. "Today the weather didn't cooperate, but (Hancock) stayed focused and it was the difference in the game."

Hancock's big inning came in the bottom of the second, when the Panthers scored seven runs on only one hit as the once-light rain began to fall harder. Spartans pitcher Darcy Everetts walked seven batters and hit another, while Katie Golden's single to left drove in Hancock's final run of the frame.


"The weather was bad," Hancock coach Heather Creek said. "But you just play the game. We weren't going to whine about our luck. I told our kids it is pretty obvious that both teams will be playing in the wet and cold."

Everetts only allowed two Hancock hits the rest of the way, which allowed the Spartans an opportunity to rally in the late innings.

McConnellsburg pounced on Kesecker late, sending 14 batters up combined in the fifth and sixth innings, but still only managed four runs.

Krystle Howell led off the fifth inning with a single and Heidi Swope was hit by a pitch. Steph Paylor dropped in a bloop single to left to load the bases with one out. Amber Skiles drove in Howell on a fielder's choice, while Hilary DeShong and Heather DeShong slapped back-to-back RBI singles to pull the Spartans within 7-5.

After Hancock made it 8-5 in the bottom of the fifth, McConnellsburg answered in the top of the sixth. Swope reached on an error, went to third on a single by Everetts and scored on another. But Everetts was baited into a rundown by Hancock catcher Nina Chiaruttinni, ending the inning and the rally.

"That was the story of our day," Kesecker said "When I needed a big play, someone stepped up and made it."

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