By John Niswander
The Washington College softball team made it in the Centennial Conference Tournament after going 4-0 last weekend, landing in the last spot.
On the Shorewomen’s senior day, WC swept Franklin & Marshall, the defending Centennial Conference Tournament Champions to keep their playoff hopes alive.
The Shorewomen shutout the Diplomats and took the first game 6-0. Head Coach Lacey Lister recorded her 200th career win as a collegiate coach as well.
WC won in dramatic fashion in the second game as senior Elaina DiPrimio hit a walk-off grand slam in the bottom of extra innings to propel the Shorewomen to victory.
“The walk-off was unreal. I still do not believe that it happened,” DiPrimio said. “It was a textbook situation. I strangely felt the most relaxed and at ease than I ever have during an ‘at bat’ in my career.”
Senior pitcher Taylor Harcum earned the win in both games Saturday to improve to 7-12 on the season. She contributed at the plate as well by going 3-4 and batting in three runs while scoring two herself. She was named the Goose Nation TV Shorewomen Player of the Game for the first game.
DiPrimio was given the same recognition during the broadcast of the second game and finished going 3-5 at the plate, with four runs batted in, including the walk-off grand slam home run in the bottom of the ninth.
This was the third straight season that WC swept the Diplomats.
Another sweep was needed on Sunday for the Shorewomen to secure a playoff berth on the road at Muhlenberg. In the first game, WC kept the lead during the 3-2 win.
The score was tied 2-2 in the top of the sixth before senior pitcher Milly Kawabata got her first hit of the season to drive in her first career run which ended up being the winning one.
Kawabata hit a two out, 0-2 count single to center field to bring freshman Grace Moery home to give WC the lead.
“It felt amazing to be able to help my team out from behind the plate and deliver the clutch hit when we needed it most,” Kawabata said. “I try and do whatever I can to help the team win every time I am out there whether it be hitting or pitching.”
Kawabata earned the save as well by pitching the bottom of the seventh inning and retiring the final three batters.
In the second game, WC jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Senior Maddie Bennett hit a single to center field to score Harcum for the first run. Senior Allyson Meil hit into a fielder’s choice with the based load to drive in DiPrimio for the second.
Bennett would score on a wild pitch to give the Shorewomen a 3-0 lead.
Muhlenberg responded with four runs in the bottom of the first to retake the lead.
WC tied the game in the top of the second after a based loaded walk scored sophomore Rachel Butler.
Sophomore Leah Stokes gave the Shorewomen the lead for good after a single up the middle scored Moery.
Harcum hit a two run double to extend the WC lead to 7-4 which proved to be the final score.
With the win, the Shorewomen clinched the number four seed in the playoffs and open their quest for a Centennial Conference Tournament Title with a game at host Gettysburg on Friday afternoon.
“It was so great to make it to the playoffs again,” Meil said. “This team really has worked hard to make it there. The season is not over until it is over.”