HUBBARD, Ohio –
With the district title on the line, the Hubbard Lady Eagles were the away team on their own field as they took on the top seeded Marlington Dukes. The two teams faced off earlier in the season back on April the 23rd in a game that ended in favor of the Dukes, 10-9.
The Lady Eagles would jump all over the Dukes in the first two innings, plating 1 in the 1st followed by 4 in the 2nd to go out in front 5-0. Hubbard’s quick start was in large part of junior Haley Croyle. Her RBI single in the first followed by a bases clearing 3 run triple in the second accounted for 4 of the Eagles first 5 runs.
Dormant through the first 2 innings, the Marlington bats awoke with a vengeance in the bottom half of the 3rd. Audrey Miller’s 2 out RBI double plated the first run of the game for the Dukes before Emma Jackson would take one deep over the left field wall on the 8th pitch of the at bat to bring them within 2.
Striking back in the 4th, Sydney Bowser would smoke a single through the 6-5 hole, bringing across Gillian Ryser and Haley Croyle, both who reached via the hit by pitch. A messy bottom half of the inning would give two runs back to the Dukes. After a double and a single to start theDukes trip to the plate, a dropped third strike would allow the first runner to come across, while a wild pitch would plate the second Marlingtonrunner of the inning.
A scoreless 5th would set the stage for a back-and-forth ending to the Division 2 Hubbard district final. Starting off the 6th with a Grace Narkumdouble followed by a Gillan Ryser single, Croylestepped up to the dish with another RBI opportunity.
Croyle would promptly deliver with 2 strikes on her by crushing a no doubter over the scoreboard in left center field, extending the Lady Eagles lead to 10-5.
Needing to at least chip away at the Hubbard lead a little in the bottom half of the inning, the Dukes chose not for just a slice of the Eagle lead, but the whole thing. Marlington’s big inning would involve 2 errors as well as a hit by pitch to bring across their first run and move the Dukes to within 4.
After another hit by pitch would load the bases, freshman Audrey Miller lined a ball over the center field wall for a grand slam and tying the game at 10. The Dukes would later plate another run to take their first lead of the game thanks to aRBI double by Ava Collins.
Trailing for the first time of the day, Hubbard needed at least one to extend the game. A leadoff single by Bell O’Brien would start the Eagles on the right foot.
Kailah Gregory would then sacrifice herself to move pinch runer, Sydney Mansour, into scoring position. Lexi Nadjusak would then single up the middle to put runners on the corners and one away. Just a deep fly away from knotting things up, Grace Narkum would hit a sacrifice fly to left field.
Back-to-back outs to start the bottom of the 7th for the Dukes left Hubbard with a good chance to move into extras for the second game in a row. However, the top of Marlington’s lineup had a different plan in mind. Angela Cirone would single to left from the leadoff spot in the lineup before Maria Davis would hit a double over the left fielders head on the 9th pitch of the at bat to bring around the speedy Cirone and walk things off from the Dukes, picking up the District title 12-11.
Audrey Miller – 2-for-4, 1 grand slam, 1 double, 5 RBIs, 2 runs scored
Angela Cirone – 3-for-4, 1 double, 3 runs scored, 1 stolen base
Emma Jackson – 3-for-4, 1 home run, 2 RBIs, 2 runs scored
Haley Croyle – 3-for-4, 1 home run, 1 triple, 7 RBIs, 2 runs scored
Grace Narkum – 1-for-1, 1 double, 2 walks, 1 sac fly, 3 runs scored, 1 RBI
Sydney Bowser – 1-for-3, 2 RBIs
*Contributed By YSN’s Jamie Thomson.