CLYDE - During two lengthy rain delays yesterday, St. Ursula plotted in the team bus and then made it worth the wait.
More than 4 1/2 hours after the first pitch, the Arrows pushed across the winning run in the 11th inning of a 2-1 victory over Elyria (26-4) in a Division I
The game was delayed 1 hour and 17 minutes by a heavy downpour after two innings. It was held up for 35 minutes due to lightning in the 10th inning.
But it only delayed the inevitable for St. Ursula (28-2), which advances to the state semifinals in Ashland on Thursday.
"The rain didn't faze any of us. That just gave us some time to focus," said winning pitcher Hayley Wiemer, who yielded just three hits.
Wiemer threw 178 pitches and struck out 15. Wiemer said it was by far the most pitches she has thrown in one game and that the extra time in the bus helped her rest.
"We talked about different situations, listened to music and pumped each other up before we came back out," said senior Bridgett Rattay.
St. Ursula, which left the bases loaded in the first inning, managed only a single over the first four innings.
Elyria pitcher Alex Boros, a first team all-state senior, gave up just three hits. Boros will play at Butler University next year.
The Arrows' Chelsey Jones singled to right, but the ball got by the outfielder and rolled to the fence and Jones went all the way to third. Alyssa Frobase and Wiemer were then walked to load the bases. Audrey Tucholski then drew another walk which brought in the go-ahead run
Meanwhile, Wiemer was on cruise control. The senior allowed only a harmless single in the third until the seventh when the Arrows were just one pitch away from posting a shutout in regulation.
Wiemer gave up a leadoff double to Kristin Sito, then got a pop out and struck out Jessica Bellottie looking. After a walk, Jen Bower had two strikes on her before she hit a routine fly to center that hit Corey Monarch's glove and fell to the ground.
"The play afterwards she caught a popup and made it up with that," Wiemer said. "We came back in the dugout and we said, 'Corey we've got your back.'●"
Three scoreless innings and a weather delay followed.
"It was hard to keep focused," Jones said. "But we kept ourselves motivated on the bus. We put our war paint on."
After nine innings, each team automatically gets a runner at second base to start an inning.
Neither team could capitalize in the 10th, but the 11th, Kelly Krueger sacrificed designated runner Monarch to third. Monarch scored on a wild pitch for a 2-1 lead.
Jones, the second baseman, then essentially sealed the victory when she threw out Sito at the plate in the bottom of the inning. Jones said she pump-faked to first to entice the runner to head home and then threw her out at the plate when she bit.
"We've been working on that," Jones said.
Arrow coach Steve Parrill said his team practices the play constantly: "Sometimes they hate it. But it shows up in a game like this."
Left fielder Kelly Krueger also made a crucial defensive play when she threw out Boros at third as Boros tried to turn a double into a triple.
Contact Mark Monroe at: email@example.com or 419-724-6110.