By GREG KLEIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
Tori France scored the game-winning run on an error during an at bat by Savannah Kirkby as top seeded Cooperstown rallied in the bottom of the sixth inning to beat visiting Oriskany, 12-8, in the Section III Class C softball quarterfinals Wednesday, June 9, at Cooperstown Central School.
The Hawkeyes trailed, 8-7, after a three-run top of the sixth gave Oriskany the lead, but then batted through the lineup in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead.
Anna Lambert began the inning by reaching on a two-base error and taking third on a wild pitch. She scored on Emily Amore’s single up the middle. France bunted her way to first, then after an out, was ruled safe at second on Jeana Geertgens’ fielder’s choice.
Oriskany got a force on Amore at home on Katie Crippen’s fielder’s choice, but Kirkby then hit a ball to the left side of the infield that led to France and Crippen scoring on a throwing error by Lani Roberts at third.
Ellie Hotaling then singled to score two insurance runs and give Cooperstown an 12-8 lead going into the top of the seventh inning.
Cooperstown softball Coach Buddy Lippitt told his team after the game that it was his favorite game of the season.
“You guys showed that if we get down, we can get back up,” he said. “That’s what a team sport is and that is what kind of game softball is.”
Cooperstown pitcher Marley Lippitt then retired Oriskany in order in the seventh to end the game.
Cooperstown sophomore Dani Seamon went 2-for-3 with a double, a home run to center field, two runs scored and four RBI, but she had to leave the game twice after straining her right calf trying to field bunts from her spot at third base. Carly Erway and Kirkby replaced her, leading to Kirkby’s pivotal at bat. Her status is uncertain for Thursday’s semifinal game.
Abby Miller went 3-for-5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored for Cooperstown. Crippen went 5-for-5 with three runs scored.
Lippitt struck out seven batters, but had to pitch out of trouble in the fifth and sixth innings, with Seamon getting hurt an a similar play in each inning.
The Hawkeyes will host No. 13 Adirondack, which has upset two higher seeds this week, at 5 p.m., Thursday, June 10, in the Section III Class C semifinals. Cooperstown beat Adirondack twice this season, including a 10 inning win May 12, at CCS.