Lance Walk-off Infield Single Lifts Solon Past West Delaware in Game One of WAMAC Doubleheader Split
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SOLON – Prior to Tuesday night Tara Lance had one game-winning hit in her life and she wasn’t even eager to claim it.
“I had one when I was really little but I don’t know if I’d count it,” Lance said. “I’ve definitely never had one in high school.”
Lance will certainly count career walk-off number two.
Lance legged out a bases loaded infield single in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift Class 3A Solon to a come from behind 4-3 win over 3A No. 7 West Delaware in the first game of a WAMAC East Division doubleheader in Solon.
West Delaware (12-2, 4-2 WAMAC) salvaged a split with a 4-1 in the nightcap as Solon moved its season record to 9-3 and 5-2 in WAMAC play.
“That was a big game and I think we can grow a lot from that,” Solon coach Jim White said of the opener. “It was almost too bad it wasn’t a single game because it seemed like it was so emotional we almost ran out of gas.”
Solon needed some late heroics to rally for a win in the opener scoring a pair of two-out runs in the ninth inning.
Taylor Ryan beat out an infield single that scored Bryn Hanrahan to tie the score at 3-3.
Lance followed by slapping a grounder toward third and barely beating the throw to first from West Delaware third baseman Paighton Lindauer allowing Taylor Moore to score the winning run.
“I was really hoping to beat it,” Lance said. “I was praying I’d be able to get there.”
Bryn Hanrahan led off the inning with a double and after back-to-back infield fly outs Moore and Rogers drew back-to-back walks to load the bases.
Ryan and Lance then won the game with back-to-back hits that didn’t leave the infield.
“It’s not at all how you imagine it,” Lance said of the game-winning hit. “That was the call was to slap, that’s what I can do.”
Ryan and Lance combined for five of Solon’s 14 hits in the opener and each drove in a run.
“In years past I used to pinch hit in that spot but they have been getting the big clutch hits like that all year,” White said. “I felt comfortable with who we had up.”
Solon spent most of the opener battling back.
West Delaware took a 2-0 lead with single runs on RBI singles in each of the first two innings.
Solon cut the lead in the half when Taylor Ryan scored on a Jadyn Jeter in the second inning and pulled even on a solo home run by Madison Rogers to lead off the fourth.
It remained tied until the ninth when West Delaware took a 3-2 lead on a two-out RBI single by Heidi Yonkovic.
Solon answered with two runs in the bottom of the inning to improve to 2-1 in one-run games this season.
Ryan was 3-for-5 and Lance was 2-for-4 as five different Spartans had multi-hit games in the opener.
“It was big,” Lance said. “I think we’ve been having our moments but it just paid off in that first game.”
Freshman Kayla West picked up the win in the opener allowing three runs on 10 hits while striking out six and walking two.
“She has been throwing like that a lot,” West said. “She has thrown really well.”
West Delaware scored three runs in the third inning of the nightcap on its way to a 4-1 win.
Freshman Macy Kleitsch held Solon to four hits in game two in a complete game victory.
Lance, Hanrahan, McKenna Miller and Jess Heick had singles for Solon in the loss.
West Delaware 110 000 001 – 3 10 0
Solon 010 100 002 – 4 14 2
W – Kayla West L – Emily Klosterman
2B – SOL: Bryn Hanrahan
HR – SOL: Madison Rogers
West Delaware 003 000 1 – 4 10 4
Solon 001 000 0 – 1 4 2
W – Macy Kleitsch L – McKenna Miller
2B – WD: Heidi Yonkovic, Claire Demmer.