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Alcorn drives Waynesboro hitters nuts

May 30, 2008|By ANDREW MASON

NEWVILLE, Pa. - When it counted the most, the Lower Dauphin softball team finally found a way to beat Waynesboro.

Lauren Alcorn pitched a one-hitter with 14 strikeouts and Katie Costik hit a two-out RBI single in the bottom of the seventh inning as the Falcons won the PIAA District 3-AAAA championship game for the second straight year, beating the Maidens 1-0 Thursday evening.

The third time proved to be the charm for Alcorn (22-2) and the Falcons (23-2), whose only two losses this season came against Waynesboro (23-3).

"The bigger the game, the better she seems to pitch," Lower Dauphin coach Bret Sparks said.

Maidens ace Taryn Ashway (23-3) - who allowed a total of five hits while fanning 28 in the two shutout victories against the Falcons - pitched a five-hitter with nine strikeouts in the losing effort Thursday.

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"Ashway really had our number the first two games," Sparks said. "But we really battled tonight and put the ball in play."

It was Waynesboro's first appearance in the district softball final, as the Maidens vied to win the school's first district team title since 1994, when the baseball team won the championship.

"It was a good game tonight - a classic. Both teams battled," Waynesboro coach Doug Stuart said. "The bottom line is that Alcorn was better than she was the first two games. She really had our hitters off stride."

Ashway had retired 12 straight batters before the Falcons got to her in the seventh.

With two outs, Nikki Ridley drew the game's only walk and pinch-hitter Jessi Stuart bunted a single over third baseman Amanda Gray's head. After a wild pitch put the runners on second and third, Costik singled to right to end the game.

Alcorn had two of Lower Dauphin's five hits on the night, including a double.

Boo Kuhn had Waynesboro's lone hit, a one-out single in the second. Erin Lisko was the Maidens' only other baserunner, as she reached on an error to lead off the fourth. Lisko moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Emily Masters, but was stranded there.

"Unfortunately, we just didn't put the ball in play. You're not going to win very many games with one hit," Doug Stuart said. "The good thing, though, is that we're not done. We just have to regroup."

The Maidens will try to get back in the win column Monday, when they make their first-ever appearance in the state tournament. The top three teams in the district advanced. Waynesboro will play either the champion from District 2 or District 4 at a site and time to be announced.

"We're just going to put this behind us and try to make it to the state championship game," Ashway said. "We can do it."

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