White Plains Sports Page
CityLine: June 20, 2001 -- O'Donnell's Bluff
Brittany Gold's big black bat connected in the bottom of the eight, sending a towering drive high and deep into the twilight, finding the right center field alley and rolling all the way to the embankment at the tennis courts, sending Linnea Trippett home with the winner Tuesday evening as Bainbridge Athletics and Marketing Blue Devils tied it in the 7th and won it in the eighth, 11-10 over Bronxville Cardiology for the Senior Girls Division Championship.
In a rousing senior girls little league championship that had everything, the Bainbridge Blue Devils went ahead, 4-1, fell behind, 6-4, went ahead 7-6 and fell behind again 10-7 going to the last of the sixth, scoring two runs on walks off a tiring Carrie Abbott to close within 10-9.
In the first, after Dana Bouvier's single had scored Carrie Abbot from third to give the Champs a 1-0, lead, Kim Wood's Ribby single up the middle plated Linnea Trippett and Brittany Gold who had walked to put Bainbridge up 2-1.
The Blue Devils increased their lead to 4-1, when Tara Kushman ripped a single up the middle to score two runs after Abbott had loaded the bases on walks.
In the third the Champs struck back with a 5-spot off Kim Wood, Blue Devil starter who lost control, walking the bases loaded. Candace Abbott's fielder's choice scored 1 run, then Angelica Brown belted a double to drive in 2 and Christina Tompkins singled to drive in 2 more to make it 6-4, Volunteers.
In the fourth, Bainbridge took the lead, when Carrie Abbott walked Jessie Drummond and Elaine Tatis with the bases loaded, and it was 7-6, Blue Devils.
In the fifth, the Bronxville Cards rolled up a 5-spot on the Senior Scoreboard 4 singles in a row. Carrie Abbott singled. Candace Abbot singled. Dayna Bouvier singled to tie the score, 7-7 and Angelica Brown bingled score Candace and take the lead 8-7. After Dayna was thrown out stealing third, Angie Brown stole second and scored on Christina Tompkins' single to left. Jasmine Somoano hit into a fielder's choice scoring Christina, to give Bronxville a 10-7 lead.
In the sixth,Tara Kushman came on to pitch for Bainbridge and shut the door with clever changes of speeds and sharp control. A great backup on a steal of third by leftfielder Kim Wood picking off a wild throw by the catcher, and firing it in hung out Christina Tompkins to dry at the plate trying to score to preserve the deficit in the top of the sixth.
In the sixth, a series of great at-bats by the Blue Devils got them closer against the tough competitor, Carrie Abbott. Kerrie Gaston worked a walk, stole second and scored on Jessie Drummond's smoking double down the left line, to cut the Volunteer lead to 10-8. After Elaine Tatis struck out, Drummond stole third and then scored on Kristy Eychmans' grounder to the right side of the infield, to make it 10-9.
In the seventh, three outs away from a championship. Abbott induced the dangerous Kuschman to pop out for out number one. But, Kim Wood doubled and stole third. Molly Gottshall ripped a hot waist-high liner right at Abbott on a 3-2 pitch, with so much magic, it glanced off Carrie Abbott's glove.
Momentarily the big yellow grapefruit was agonizingly in the air and it hit a lunging Dauna Bouvier's glove, rolled in it and spun out, hitting the ground and rolling out to short, just missing a line drive championship winning double play, since Wood had long since raced to the plate and would have been easily doubled off.
The ball squirted through to the hole at deep short, scoring Wood with the equalizer to tie the game 10-10 to screams and whoops and screeches from the Bainbridge bench. Molly Gottshall then tried to steal second and Candace Abbott gunned her down on a terrific strike to second for the first out. After Tatis fanned and Eyckmans grounded out and we were in bonus frames.
After a brief conference with the umpire in the gathering dusk, the teams went to the eighth agreed that if neither team could score the game would end in a tie.
Tara Kuschman who pitched three innings of shutout relief in the sixth, seventh and eighth retired the Bronxville Vols in order in the eighth thanks to a line shot grab by the third baseperson. In fact, Kuschman, one of the most feared batters in the division was kept under control at the plate, but her stalwart relief work gave Bainbridge a chance to win.
Gallant in an all-the-way-pitching-effort was Carrie Abbott who continually pitched in and out of critical situations for Bronxville.
She retired the first two batters in the last of the eighth with darkness setting in. Then the Blue Devils' Linnea Trippett, an igniter the whole night, drew a walk on a long count and stole second.
The stage was set. Brittany Gold came to the plate. Darkness was closing in.
In a feat reminiscent of Gabby Harnett's homer in the gloamin at Wrigley Field in 1938 that beat the Pittsburgh Pirates in a critical game for the '38 pennant, Gold got a pitch she could drive with 2 strikes.
The big black bat flashed. She got it all. The resounding CRACK an explosion in the summer night. It was high it was far and it was gone, DEEP into the right centerfield gap as shrill shrieks of joy brought the crowd to its feet. The longest drive we've seen this year rolled all the way to the tennis court embankments, as Trippett raced in from second. A terrific relay almost got Trippett at the plate, but not in time, and Bainbridge had wrested the championship from the gallant champs.
It was the most outstanding game in little league since the Minor II Tournament Girls Teams played extra innings last July. Congratulations to both teams for staging such a memorable, competitive and gritty championship.
Linnea Trippett was a real sparkplug for Bainbridge in the middle of three of their scoring rallies. Tara Kuschman's relief work saved the game. Kim Wood, the starting pitcher had a strong game at the plate, and Molly Gottshall snapped out of a hitting slump by tying the game in the seventh.
Carrie Abbott went all the way for Bronxville, fanning 11 and going 3 for 4 at the plate and scoring 3 runs. Her sister Candace caught the whole game, threw out one runner at second and went 2 for 4 with 2 runs scored. Dayna Bouvier played first base and had 3 hits with 2 Runs Batted In. Christina
Tompkins also went 2 for 4 with 2 RBI's and 4 stolen bases for the defending champs.
The line score:
Winning Pitcher: Kuschman
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