Softball Upended in CC Playoff Opener

GETTYSBURG, Pa.  – Gettysburg's first home playoff game in 13 years didn't go quite as well as the Bullets had hoped as fourth-seeded Washington College pulled off a 7-3 victory in the opening game of the Centennial Conference Championship at Bobby Jones Field on Friday.
 
Gettysburg (21-14) will need to win its next game against McDaniel College (21-19-1), which lost to Haverford College (20-11) 5-0 in Friday's second game, in order to stay in contention for the conference crown. With Sunday's forecast looking unfavorable for play, Saturday's game schedule was adjusted to accommodate the need to play as many games as possible. The Bullets and Green Terror will play at 10 a.m., while Haverford and Washington (17-20) will take the field 30 minutes after the completion of the opening game.
 
Washington, which swept its final two conference series in order to reach the postseason, jumped in front in its opening at bat against Gettysburg. With two outs and two runners on, Rachel Butler stroked a double to left-center to bring home the first run.
 
The Shorewomen tacked on two more runs in the top of the second inning on a single by Taylor Harcum and a double by Caroline Braungard to take a 3-0 lead.
 
The Bullets cracked the scoring column in the fourth inning. Junior Meredith Taylor (Hamilton, N.J./Northern Burlington) led off the inning with a single and senior Wendy Folfas (Westminster, Md./McDonogh School) followed with a single to right field. After a sacrifice to advance the runners, sophomore Liz Cowell (Verona, N.J./Mount Saint Dominic) plated the lead runner with a sacrifice fly to left.
 
Washington struck for two more runs in the top of the fifth inning. Harcum led off with a single and advanced around the bases on three consecutive sacrifices, including scoring on the last by Maddie Bennett. Chrissy Segrest added a pinch-hit single to score another run and put the score at 5-1.
 
Freshman Shelby Baker (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington) cut the deficit by pummeling her second home run in as many games way over the fence in right-center. The Bullets would get no closer and the Shorewomen added a run in each of the final two frames to set the final score.
 
Folfas led Gettysburg with a pair of hits, while Baker and Taylor each added a walk to their base knocks. Senior Aileen Reilly (Huntington Station, N.Y./St. Anthony's) took the loss after giving up five runs, four hits, and a walk in 4.1 innings. Junior Morgan Clauser (Columbus, N.J./Northern Burlington) gave up one earned run while striking out four over the final 2.2 innings.
 
Harcum went 3-for-5 with two runs and one RBI. She also earned the victory after allowing one run and four hits over four innings.
 
Haverford and McDaniel threatened to score often in the first four innings, but each team came up empty until the fifth. That's when the Fords rallied for three runs with two outs, including a single up the middle by Emma Souter which capped the frame.
 
The Green Terror loaded the bases in the bottom of the fifth, but Temma Levis escaped the jam with a fielder's choice to third base. Levis retired the final five batters she faced and finished with five strikeouts in the victory. She also aided her cause at the plate with a two-out, two-run single in the top of the seventh to cap the scoring.
 
Souter finished 3-for-4 and Julia Blake went 2-for-4 for Haverford. Alicia Wagner led McDaniel with a pair of hits. Fiona Johnson went five innings and allowed six hits and two walks with two strikeouts in the loss.