Vikings rule Class A
Ryanne Hawk’s game-winning hit gives Williams Valley second state title in four years
By Rob Wheary, Staff Writer • email@example.com
STATE COLLEGE – It was a place that Rayanne Hawk always dreamed of being, and Coach Lee Reiser confirmed it.
The stage was set: tie game, the bottom of the seventh inning, two outs and a runner in scoring position. One base hit would give the win to your team.
“When I talked with Coach Reiser, he asked me if this was where I wanted to be,” Hawk said. “I looked at him and said, ‘Yeah, this is where I want to be.’”
Hawk’s hit to right field glanced off the glove of a retreating Mackenzie Carpenter and dropped for a hit, scoring Caitlin Pinchorski and giving Williams Valley a 3-2 win and the PIAA Class A State Softball Championship.
“I’m so happy for the seniors and everyone with this team. We have made big strides in this program over the last few years and the seniors were here three years ago when we won the first time, so we wanted to get this for them and give something for the underclassmen to shoot for,” Reiser said following the game.
In front of a packed crowd at Nittany Lion Softball Park at Penn State University, Williams Valley met a West Greene team that came into the game with a 26-1 record and averaging 10.7 runs per game this season.
It was Williams Valley that put the first runs of the game on the board in the second inning. After third-baseman Kenna Ferron got the Vikings first hit of the game and then stole second, Megan Schadle made it 1-0 with an RBI single to right field then moving to second on an error.
The next hitter, Autumn Calnon, put another single in right field, bringing in courtesy runner Bailee McNeil and the Vikings had a sea of blue shirts in the standing rocking as Williams Valley went up 2-0.
That lead evaporated in the third when West Greene’s McKenna Lampe hit a triple over Hawk’s head in center field that scored one run, and then Lampe was awarded home after a relay throw to third went out of play.
Once that scoring onslaught was over, the game turned into a pitchers duel between Williams Valley ace Tianna Yanoscak and West Greene’s Madison Renner. Both teams managing to shut each other down.
The game was evenly matched in the sixth when momentum seemed to shift to Williams Valley’s side after McKenna Lampe hit her second double of the game into center field. She tried to stretch it to third, but it was vindication for Hawk as she made a perfect throw in for the relay to get Lampe at third.
In the fateful seventh inning, Pinchorski came to the plate with two outs and the score tied.
“I told her that no matter what she has to get on. I didn’t care how but I told her she needed to get on base,” Reiser said.
Five pitches — four of them called balls — later, Pinchorski found herself on first base. Reiser then gave her a steal sign for second base, one she was a little hesitant about.
“I thought, ‘Caitlin, you haven’t been caught all year, trust me,’,” Reiser said following the game.Pinchorski made it to second with no throw, setting up Hawk’s at-bat that gave Williams Valley the right to wear the gold medals around their neck.
“It feels really good right now,” Hawk said following the game. “We’ve all had our ups and downs over this year, but we all came together to make this happen.”
Yanoscak remembers throwing batting practice as a freshman in 2013 before the championship game, and now got her chance to be there.
“I watched back then, so I wanted to get here and pitch in this environment and Megan and me (catcher Megan Schadle) had them off balance and the plan worked great,” Yanoscak said.
For Hawk, Yanoscak, Kate Whelski and Megan and Alyssa Schadle, June 16 marked their final time in the Williams Valley uniform as players, all five of them graduating and onto college next season.
“This group of girls has done something amazing here,” Reiser said. “They’ve always been a team, but this year, you saw them grow up and became a family.”
Williams Valley 3, West Greene Senior 2
West Greene — 002 000 0 — 2 4 1
Williams Valley — 020 000 1 — 3 6 2
W — Yanoscak. L — Renner.
Hits: West Greene — Mc. Lampe 2, Renner, Rizor. Williams Valley — Pinchorski, Hawk, Ferron, M. Schadle, Calnon, Whitcomb.
2B — Lampe 2.