Taft advances to city softball finals
BY MICHAEL WOJTYCHIW May 19, 2011
Sometimes all it takes to win a big game is a little luck in the right situations. Taft got all the luck they needed in extra innings as it held on for a 9-5 nine-inning win against top-seeded Northside in the first Public League semifinal at UIC.
Kyra Vidas broke a 5-5 tie in the top of the ninth with a single to left field, giving the Eagles a 6-5 lead. After Emily Schmalbach scored on an error by the catcher, Arissa Troche added a two-run single of her own to set up the final score.
“It’s a great win and in great fashion,’’ Troche said. “We worked really hard for this and to play like we did that really means a lot to us and for everything we have tried to accomplish.’’
After blowing a four-run lead late in the game, Taft got a little luck in the bottom of the eighth when Northside coach Germaine Padilla made a questionable call. With the bases loaded, one out and the heart of his lineup coming up, Padilla tried a suicide squeeze. The gamble didn’t pay off as Angela Villagomez was tagged out at the plate. A flyout to right ended the inning and any chance the Mustangs had of winning the game.
“We practice that all the time,’’ Padilla said. “Its one of our plays that we work on so I didn’t have to think twice about doing it.’’
Taft got off to a fast start before the Mustangs (16-11) rallied to tie the game on a two-out, two-run single by losing pitcher Chamara Moore in the bottom of the seventh.
Troche led Taft (16-15) by going 3-for-4 with three RBI, while freshman Kyra Vidas added three hits and two RBI as well. Kathleen Meersman picked up the complete-game win, as she struck out six.
Moore took the loss, but struck out eight in the complete game.