Softball: Kelley Dodge drives in game-winner as Carmel win sectional semiCarmel's Kelley Dodge (2) gets a lift from Nicole Bitter (21) after her walk-off base hit to give the Corsairs a 9-8 win over McHenry in their IHSA sectional semifinal at Cary Grove High School in Cary Wednesday. May 30, 2012. | John Konstantaras~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 30, 2012 8:44PM
Carmel entered Wednesday’s Class 4A Cary-Grove sectional semifinal with a so-so record.
But the Corsairs notched an extraordinary 9-8 upset of McHenry to up their record to 19-18 and end the Warriors’ season at 24-4.
With the score tied at 8-8 in the bottom of the seventh inning and Carmel junior catcher Skyler Zak on third base, senior centerfielder Kelley Dodge (4-for-5, two RBI) struck a two-out run-scoring single up the middle to end it.
Carmel trailed 8-4 after McHenry plated four runs in the third and fourth innings. Warriors junior first baseman Kelsey Cichocki (2-for-4, six RBI) followed her two-run single in the third inning with a grand slam in the fourth.
“Our girls never got down, never hung their heads,” Carmel coach Jason Raymond said.
His players scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to knot the score at 8-8. Sophomore shortstop Kathleen Felicelli made it 8-6 on a fielder’s choice before sophomore second baseman Amy Abel came through with a two-run single over shortstop Alexa McClaughry’s head.
Corsairs sophomore starter Nicole Bitter got the win — after reentering the game in the top of the seventh as a relief pitcher. Junior Erika Schoenfeld took over for Bitter in the fifth and didn’t allow a run in two innings. She also got the first out in the seventh.
Carmel will face either Hononegah or Jacobs for the Cary-Grove sectional title at 11 a.m. Saturday.