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Central Mountain Rallies from Five Down to Beat DuBois in D6-8-9 5A Softball Title Game

Lauren Walker had three hits for DuBois in the loss. Photo by Andy Close

DUBOIS, Pa. – Allison Lininger’s two-out double into the left-center gap in the top of the seventh inning brought home Caitlyn Watson from second to complete a comeback from five down for Central Mountain in a 6-5 win over DuBois in the District 6-8-9 Class 5A title game at Heindl Field in DuBois.

The Wildcats trailed 5-0 going to the fifth but scored twice in the fifth, three times in the sixth, and once in the seventh to complete the comeback.

The seventh-inning run came after Allie Snyder retired the first two batters in the inning with ease.

But then she went 3-0 on Watson before hitting her with what would have been ball four. A wild pitch moved Watson to second, and Lininger’s fourth hit of the day drove her home.

DuBois took the 5-0 lead thanks to four unearned runs over a span of two innings – the second and third – against Central Mountain sophomore ace Adalyn McKeague.

         

McKeauge came into the game with a 0.91 ERA in 85 innings of work and had given up just 17 runs all season.

But the Lady Beavers struck for three runs in the second and two more in the third to build the 5-0 advantage.

An infield bunt single by Kat Paton followed by an RBI fielder’s choice from Jaden Swatsworth and a two-out infield single by Lauren Walker accounted for the three runs in the second, an inning that saw Central Mountain commit two errors.

Then two more errors in the third led to two more DuBois runs with Patton delivering a two-run single.

Things looked smooth for Snyder and the Lady Beavers until the fifth when control problems caught up to the DuBois hurler.

         

A leadoff walk to Watson was followed by a Lininger single and w walked to Harley Kunes to load the bases with no one out.

Up five, DuBois manager Denny Nosker elected to play his infield in, and that decision cost him when Madison Hardy blooped a single just over Swatsworth’s head at second that would have been an easy out if she was playing normal depth.

With the score 5-1, the infield stayed in, and this time it worked when Madisyn Wian hit a hard grounder to Sarah Henninger at shortstop with Henninger throwing home to erase Lininger.

But after Snyder struck out pinch hitter Hana Styers, the first pitch to Kesley Burrows was ruled to have hit Burrows in the elbow.

Burrows didn’t act like the ball had hit her, and the ball was caught by catcher Alexas Pfeuffer, who threw the ball immediately back to Snyder like it was a ball. But the umpire said it hit her, and the score was 5-2.

     

The three-run sixth for Central Mountain started when Gracie Saar was hit by a pitch – Snyder hit four batters in the game after hitting just six all season. A single by Liniger and walks to Kunes and Hardy along with a pair of wild pitches helped tie the game, which happened when Wian reached on an infield single.

Lininger was 4-for-5 with a run scored and two RBIs for Central Mountain.

Patton was 3-for-4 with a run scored and three RBIs for DuBois with Walker going 3-for-4 with an RBI.

McKeague got the win going seven innings allowing five runs, one earned, on eight hits, two walks, and a hit batter while striking out four.

Snyder took the loss going seven innings allowing six earned runs on eight hits, three walks, and four hit batters while striking out eight.

Central Mountain will play WPIAL third-place finisher North Hills in the opening round of the PIAA playoffs Monday.

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