MALTA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — In the face of a four-run, first-inning deficit, the Ichabod Crane softball team kept its’ composure in Saturday evening’s Class B regional final at Luther Forest Athletic Fields. The Riders were ready for the challenge; in fact, they had even discussed how they’d approach a similar situation prior to the game.
“It was kind of ironic in the first inning because we had a speech and a team meeting before the game,” said senior shortstop Emma Scheitinger. “We were like, “don’t get flustered. This is the first inning. If they get up, we gotta stay calm.” They ended up getting a lead, and everyone stayed calm. We brought it back. (We) all understood the message, and we stayed calm and collected.”
Ichabod Crane calmly and promptly erased that four-run hole against Sec. X’s Canton, scoring four runs of its’ own in the bottom of the first.
That was part of a 16-1 run for the Riders that secured them a spot in the state semifinals, as they pursue a second straight Class B state championship.
Ichabod’s Abbey Milazzo drove in the go-ahead run in the second frame on an RBI groundout that plated Gabriella Wendelken. The Riders took a 5-4 advantage into the third, where they hung an eight-spot on Canton, effectively putting the Golden Bears in the rear-view mirror.
Starting pitcher Kari Graziano settled in nicely after a rough first inning, allowing just one run over her next six innings of work, earning a complete-game victory, as the Riders came out on top by a 16-5 final.
They’ll head to Moriches Athletic Complex Friday for a state semi-final battle with Sec. IV’s Windsor Central. First pitch is set for 4:00 p.m.