Lockport edges Providence
Updated: June 7, 2011 1:39PM
Lockport beat Providence 2-1 in 11 innings Wednesday in a Class 4A Providence Regional semifinal that had a very unspectacular ending.
Porters senior Jenn Bond drew a bases-loaded, walk-off walk.
Sounds undramatic, anyway. But there was plenty of drama going on in Bond’s head.
With the count 2-and-1, she had no more than a split second to gauge an ever-so-slightly high fastball delivered by Providence left-hander Amanda Wilson.
The battler in her wanted to swing.
The smart hitter in her knew better.
“Usually high pitches are my weakness,” Bond said. “I was really just happy that I laid off of it. I wouldn’t have gotten the hit I wanted.”
Plus, she got the call, for ball three. The next pitch was low, and Bond was sky-high trotting to first base as teammate Sam DeMasi was touching home plate.
It brought to an end a 2011 adventure between Lockport and Providence that saw the two teams battle to a darkness-ended 2-2 tie April 2 at the Providence Invitational, then go 11 more innings Wednesday before a winner finally emerged.
Lockport (25-10-1) is to play No. 5 Marian Catholic (29-5) on 11 a.m. Saturday for the regional title.
The Porters had to rally from a 1-0 deficit after Providence’s Kelly Engwall cracked a solo home run in the top of the second against starter Amanda Oberc. Oberc (3 hits, 9 strikeouts) blanked the Celtics over the next six innings before Kelly Bowler came on in relief to eventually record the win.
The Porters tied the game in the sixth when DeMasi led off with a slap-bunt single, was sacrificed to second by Allie Phad and scored on a ground single into right by Brianna Carney.
Porters catcher Lia Romeo, who sparkled on snagging two foul pops behind the plate, made a huge play in the top of the 10th, picking a Providence runner off third with one out.
DeMasi led off the bottom of the 11th with an infield single, went to second on a sac bunt by Phad and beat a throw to third on a chop in front of the plate by Romeo. Carney was intentionally walked.
The game-ending pass to Bond was Wilson’s first non-intentional walk during a brilliant performance in which she allowed just six hits and struck out eight. In the sixth, she made a nice play on a squeeze bunt attempt and threw a runner out at the plate. Her last strikeout came in the 11th, a three-pitch effort with one out and the bases loaded.
“This is definitely the game we wanted all year,” Wilson said. “This was it for our seniors, so I just tried to do everything I could.”