Roundup: Double in 8th sends Montour to championship game

| Wednesday, May 23, 2012, 9:16 p.m.

Belle Vernon was within an out of its third trip to the WPIAL Class AAA softball finals.

But Montour catcher Malory Gerst spoiled those plans. Her two-run homer tied the score in the top of the seventh inning, and Tori Roman doubled home pinch-runner Emily Diecks from first base in the eighth inning to send Montour to the championship game with a 3-2 victory Wednesday at California (Pa.)'s Lilly Field.

“I called the wrong pitch,” Belle Vernon coach Tom Rodriguez said. “I take the blame.”

Belle Vernon grabbed a 2-0 lead on a solo home run by Alexis Ellin in the second inning, and Natalie Bashada, who doubled, scored on an error in the third inning.

Roman went 3 for 3 for Montour, while Bashada had two hits for the Leopards.

Elizabeth Forward 2, Greensburg Salem 1 — Catcher Virginia Roche broke up a no-hit bid by Greensburg Salem starter Jayne Oberdorf when she slapped a bases-loaded single to center field with one out in the bottom of the seventh to score two runs and give ninth-seeded Elizabeth Forward (17-6) a come-from-behind, walk-off victory in the WPIAL Class AAA semifinals at California (Pa.).

“I was just watching the ball, hoping to get that meatball down the middle and drive it somewhere,” Roche said. “Then it happened.”

Elizabeth Forward will return to at Lilly Field to play Montour in the WPIAL Class AAA championship game May 31. Greensburg Salem will face Belle Vernon in the consolation game Tuesday.

Class AA

Greensburg Central Catholic 6, Riverside 3 — Alie Perz and Leah Daigle each delivered two-run singles with two outs in the fifth inning of a Class AA semifinal at North Allegheny, lifting the Centurions (14-6) into the title game for the second straight year. Kirsten Wilson went 3 for 4 with an RBI for Riverside (16-3), which stranded nine baserunners.

Deer Lakes 2, Neshannock 0 — Deer Lakes advanced to the WPIAL Class AA title game for the first time in school history as C.C. Sarver and Hannah Blinn drove in first-inning runs for the fourth-seeded Lancers (18-1) in a semifinal upset of top-seeded Neshannock (19-1) at North Allegheny.

Deer Lakes will play Greensburg Central Catholic (14-6) in the title game May 31 at California (Pa.). Neshannock will take on Riverside in the consolation game Tuesday at a site and time to be determined. Haliey Moretti pitched a three-hit shutout, and Blinn was 2 for 3 for Deer Lakes.

Class A

Chartiers-Houston 3, Vincentian 1 — Colby Miller hit a two-run single in the fifth inning to break open a 1-1 game and send top-seeded Chartiers Houston (22-1) to the Class A championship game with a victory at Fairhaven Park. Miller also had an RBI single in the third that scored winning pitcher Kayla Briggs, who struck out six in a complete game. Bridget Melvin struck out three in the loss for fifth-seeded Vincentian (13-9).

Carmichaels 6, Sto-Rox 5 (9 inn.) — Morgan Berardi hit a single down the third-base line in the ninth inning to score Caroline Cree and give third-seeded Carmichaels a semifinal victory at Fairhaven Park. Berardi went 3 for 5 for Carmichaels (22-1), which dealt second-seeded Sto-Rox its first loss this season.

Josie Buckley hit a grand slam, Aimee Miller homered, and Natalie Smarra had five strikeouts in a complete game for Sto-Rox (19-1).

Cameron Grimes had four strikeouts to earn the win for the Mighty Mikes, who will take on top-seeded Chartiers-Houston in the championship game May 31 at California (Pa.) University. Sto-Rox will play Vincentian in the consolation game Tuesday at a site and time to be determined.

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