Marian Survives Wild Give-and-Take with H-F
Spartans get clutch hitting, turn big defensive play to pull out a dramatic victory over the host Vikings.
It was an exciting game between rivals Marian Catholic and Homewood-Flossmoor on Tuesday. When it appeared one team had the momentum, the other would take it right back.
In the end, it was Shannon Dee’s two-out RBI single that plated Shawna Sadler in the top of the seventh inning that lifted the Spartans to an 8-7 win.
The Vikings were the home team and had the last at-bat, and they had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. Trailing by one with runners on second and third with two outs, Sydney Battle came to the plate with a chance to tie or win the game.
Battle had homered earlier in the game, but further heroics were not to be, as she hit a sharp liner to Spartans third baseman Alexandra Nickel to end the game.
The Spartans were uncharacteristically sloppy, committing four errors that led to six unearned runs for the Vikings. But it was a great defensive play by the Spartans that helped them pull out the late-inning win.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Vikings got a one-out single and sacrificed the runner to second. But the runner overran the bag for a split second, and Spartans second baseman Sadler, who covered first on the sacrifice, fired to shortstop Briana Clark to get the runner.
“We practice it all the time, and we finally got a game where we could use it—and it worked this time,” Sadler said.
As it seems to happen so often, the player who made a great defensive play to end one inning led off the next. Sadler singled to start the Spartans’ half of the seventh, was sacrificed to second by Nickel and came home on Dee’s single for the eventual game-winning run.
"Lot of nervousness, but I was ready to go,” Sadler said. “I told myself I am going to get a hit, I am going to score and we’re all going to win this, and that is what I did and I am glad it worked out.”
The Spartans jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the top of the first thanks to a three-run home run by Rachel Glenn.
The Vikings took the lead in the fourth, highlighted by a three-run homer by Battle.
Glenn got the Spartans right back on top the next inning by launching her second homer of the game.
Glenn started on the mound for the Spartans and struggled, so she was happy to contribute with her bat.
“It was a good hitting day for me,” she said. “It was great that I hit my first two (homers) of the season against one of our bigger rivals."
Rebecca Gray (7-2) recorded the win in relief of Glenn.
“There was a lot of excitement. A lot of our girls know their girls, plus it was good to win a crazy game like that,” Spartans head coach Kerri Evans said.