Hamilton tried to make sure Maggie Hall didn’t beat them again in softball, but Hall still found a way on Friday.
After being intentionally walked for the third time, Hall eluded Kendall Rusch’s tag on Ellen Vibbard’s grounder down the third-base line to score the game-winning run in the bottom of the sixth inning of Cooperstown’s 5-2 home win.
“That was nice,” Hall said. “I was scared she was going to make the tag, but I got just far enough away from her.”
“It was frustrating they weren’t pitching to me,” she continued. “After the game their coach said he did it out of respect.”
On April 17, Hall went 4-for-4 with two home runs in a 14-1 win at Hamilton. Cooperstown has given the second place Emerald Knights their only two losses this season, and now has a two-game lead and a tie-breaker in the Center State Conference Division III standings.
After Hall made it 3-2, Erin Hascup hit a double down the third base line to score Vibbard and Nicole Cring, who had also been walked. Cring and Hall advanced to second and third on a passed ball before Vibbard’s RBI fielder’s choice.
Cring was also walked three times by Hamilton, twice intentionally. Without Cring and Hall’s bats, Cooperstown needed support from other players, but coach Dave Bliss said he wouldn’t call Hascup and Vibbard unlikely heroes.
“I wouldn’t say that at all,” Bliss said. “Erin and Ellen have been hitting well for us all year. Catherine (Borgstrom, who went 3-for-4), has been hitting very well. We got very good pitching and defense to go along with our good hitting.”
Cring struck out 11 batters, giving up two runs on six hits and one walk. She struck out three batters in both the first and fifth innings.