WHEELING - Normally when a team leaves 10 runners on base in a game, including eight in scoring position, it is left to wonder what could have been with a timely hit here or there.
Fortunately for Wheeling Park's softball team that wasn't the case Saturday afternoon as Coach Dee Davis' squad did enough early in innings and at the bottom of the lineup to escape with a victory.
Park got five hits and five RBI from its 6-9 spots in the order, and Carly Greer prevailed in the circle as the Patriots recorded a 6-2 victory against Washington (W.Va.) High on Lisa's Field at the J.B. Chamber's I-470 Sports Complex.
Photo by Tony Viola
Wheeling Park’s Carly Greer fires to the plate Saturday.
While Davis' streaking squad has been on fire, the loss was the third in two days in the Northern Panhandle for Wheeling Central graduate Amanda Orkoskey's Patriots, who dropped a doubleheader at John Marshall on Friday.
Walks were one of the main issues for the visitors, allowing four, however, two were leading off innings and two came with one out, with three of them scoring.
"I know we had some walks that hurt us, but I felt other than that our pitchers did a good job," Orkoskey said. "Our starter was doing fine, but I thought we would change things up midway through the game."
The visitors struck first, getting a one-out double by Erin Lehman off the base of the right-field fence ahead of Tori Manuel's run-scoring single for a 1-0 Washington lead.
Park needed two hitters to answer. Senior Kelsi Johnson beat out an infield single, stole second and scored when Greer ripped a double down the left-field line to knot it at 1-1.
A leadoff walk to begin the second put the Patriots ahead. One out after Morgan Karnell got a free pass, Sarah Long's laser-shot double, just inside the left-field chalk, scored her for a 2-1 advantage.
Park mistakes allowed Washington to forge a 2-2 deadlock in the third with a single, walk and a pair of fielding mistakes. However, the hosts did get a break when a line shot back to Greer and throw to first turned into an inning-ending double play.
Another walk, this time coming with one out, helped push across another run for the hosts. Kaleigh Sidon worked the four-pitch freebee, went to second on Skyler Carrington's sacrifice bunt and came home on Karnell's RBI single back through the box.
The Eastern Panhandle Patriots had an unconventional three outs in the fourth, putting a running on first via an error then watching what looked like a base hit to center turn into a fielder's choice on a fine play by Kaleigh Sidon.
Losing pitcher Carly Jansure, who reached on the fielder's choice, was then thrown out trying to steal second.
Park broke it open in the sixth, once again getting things started with a leadoff walk. Kaliegh Sidon followed that with a double off the left-field fence ahead of Carrington's two-run single to left.
Karnell singled and scored after a Karnell hit and Colleen Tracy's fielder's choice. Carrington actually never made it to the plate on her slide, but was awarded the run due to an obstruction call.
"We got the job done with the lower part of the order," Davis said. "But I told the girls we also left a lot of ducks on the pond and we have to get those runs home.
"There were a few errors after we didn't make any against Brooke on Thursday, but there were also a couple of big plays in the field that helped us a lot.
"It's a good win over another Class AAA school in the state. But the biggest thing right now is moving up and staying alive for the OVAC playoffs. I really don't care where we finish in the final order, as long as we are able to get in."