Softball: Chesterton walks off with sectional title
By Dave Melton Post-Tribune correspondent May 25, 2012 11:38PM
Updated: July 3, 2012 10:48AM
CHESTERTON—The best luxury for a power hitter? An equally effective bat behind her in the lineup.
Sometimes, that luxury becomes a necessity.
Chesterton’s No. 5 hitter, Mallory McKee, was the hero for the Trojans on Friday, connecting on a two-run, walk-off single giving Chesterton a 7-6 victory over Crown Point and its first sectional championship since 2006.
“All I kept thinking was that I needed to get that hit,” McKee said. “I knew the first pitch was going to be a strike so I just swung as hard as I could.”
“We’ve got several kids that can hit,” said Chesterton coach LouAnn Hopson. “I don’t think enough people realize how good of a hitter (McKee) is.”
While the scorebook won’t know the difference, McKee’s single was far from a solid line drive. It hung in the air for several seconds — or an eternity, if you were from Chesterton — before dropping in shallow center field.
Said McKee: “I thought it was going to be caught, but then I saw how far back (the centerfielder) was playing; then I knew she wasn’t going to catch it.”
Chesterton trailed 6-4 to start the final inning, which started with back-to-back singles from Shelby Carter and Megan Tymorek. After a popout, Megan Matheny doubled, scoring Carter and putting the winning run on second base.
Sydney Cooley, who’d hit three home runs in the previous two games, was due up next. Crown Point did not intentionally walk Cooley — as they had earlier in the game — but, as coach Ginger Britton said, “We weren’t going to give her a pitch down the middle.” Cooley grounded out, setting the stage for McKee.
The final inning capped a wild, back-and-forth affair between the two teams. Crown Point took a 3-1 lead in the third on four hits, and stretched the lead to 6-1 in the fifth — thanks to three Chesterton errors. In the bottom of the fifth, Chesterton scored three times, including twice on wild pitches.