Greencastle rallies four times to advance to softball quarterfinals

ga logoFour come from behind rallies, a triple play and two double plays propelled the Greencastle -Antrim Blue Devils to a wild 8-7, twelve inning win over the Cedar Cliff Colts at Greencastle Thursday in the opening round of the District 3 5A softball playoffs..

It was a classic, the Blue Devils were down for the count with two outs and nobody on in the bottom of the seventh inning trailing 3-2. Hannah Beeler doubled to keep the Blue Devils hopes alive,Bailey Schaeffer followed with an RBI single to tie the score and send the game to extra innings tied at 3-3.(Click on audio below with Greg Hoover on Mid Penn Broadcasting and WRGG.)

Both teams failed to sore in the eight and ninth innings. It turned out to be the calm before the storm. In the tenth inning International softball rules take effect, when the teams begin the inning with a runner on second base. The player who made the final out the previous inning goes to second base at the start of the next inning. That happened six times, and all six runners scored.

Cedar Cliff scored a run in the top of tenth to go ahead 4-3. Greencastle came right back in the bottom of the tenth as Baylee Schaffer singled in Kylie Cunningham to tie the score 4-4 and send the game to the eleventh inning.

The Colts scored a run in the top of the eleventh  to take a 5-4 lead and had the bases loaded with nobody out. The Blue Devils quickly got out of the inning in the most unlikely fashion. The Colts batter hit a fly ball to center fielder Kylie Cunningham who threw home to catcher Hailey Long who put the tag on the runner at the plate, and then threw to third baseman Hannah Beeler who recorded the out on the runner held up between second and third to complete the rare triple play 8-2-5 and end the inning .(Audio highlight below.)

In the bottom of the eleventh the Blue Devils rose to the occasion again and got the tying run home on a sacrifice fly from Kristen True to make it 5-5.

Cedar Cliff scored two runs in the top of the twelfth to take a 7-5 lead.

Greencastle came to bat in the bottom of the twelfth on the brink of elimination for the fourth time and like the previous three previous times found a way to stay alive in the playoffs. With a runner on second to begin the inning. Kylie Croskey reached on an error, Kylie Cunningham laid down a bunt single to load the bases. Hannah Beeler stepped to the plate and came up with the clutch hit again to tie the game at 7-7. (Audio highlight).  Bailey Schaeffer was issued an intentional walk to load the bases. Bailee Martin then got the game winner on a hard shot back to the mound that went off the leg of pitcher Avery Winchell for a base hit to score the game winner and give the Greencastle-Antrim Blue Devils the dramatic first round win. (Greg Hoover audio on Mid Penn Broadcasting and WRGG).

The Blue Devils took their only lead of the game until the walk off twelfth inning win, 1-0 in the bottom of the first, The Colts scored two second inning runs and added one in the fourth. The Blue Devils scored a solo run in the bottom of the sixth to cut the lead to 3-2 and set the stage for the miraculous Blue Devils comebacks.

The Blue Devils move into the quarterfinal round Thursday afternoon at Norlo Park in Chambersburg and will take on the #15 seed the Waynesboro Maidens who survived a three run bottom of the seventh to defeat #2 seed Spring Grove 7-4, with a three run top of the eighth. Game time is 2:00 p.m. It will be a doubleheader with Chambersburg hosting Manheim Township at 4:30 p.m. Both games will be broadcast on Mid Penn Broadcasting.