Ship completes undefeated home slate, moves on to D3 quarterfinals
One of the Shippensburg softball team's biggest goals this season was to defend their home turf, and complete the 2017 season slate undefeated.
Well, mission accomplished.
Tuesday the Greyhounds took down Mechanicsburg 8-4 in the first round of the District 3 Class 5A tournament, and is one step closer to another goal - a district championship.
The Lady Hounds will meet top-ranked Lampeter-Strasburg on the road at 1 p.m. Thursday afternoon - weather permitting. Shippensburg has four seniors scheduled to graduate on Thursday at 7 p.m., and if weather delays the game, the PIAA will likely move it to Friday.
Lampeter-Strasburg topped Northern York 1-0 to punch its ticket to the next round - but despite having the task of taking on the district's No. 1 seed, Shippensburg remains confident after a solid game on Tuesday.
"We're not ready to be done our season yet, and I think we are really ready to run the table now," Shippensburg's Courtney Coy said. "We're on the right road and I think we will just keep on rolling from here on out."
After taking a quick 3-0 lead in the first inning, Shippensburg let Mechanicsburg back in it thanks to a three-run home run by Wildcat Erica Smiley to tie the game 4-4.
But the Greyhounds didn't bat an eye with Coy up to bat in the bottom of the fifth.
Coy smacked a long two-run home run to center field to give Shippensburg a two-run lead. She was then helped out by Morgan Fetter in the sixth inning, who blooped a two-run homer right inside the foul post in left field to give the Greyhounds some breathing room.
"Mechanicsburg is always one team we want to beat badly, so I think that was our mindset going in," Fetter said. "I actually didn't think that ball was going over at all because I hit it off the handle of my bat, so when I realized it did go over I was super excited."
"The girls are playing with confidence right now," Shippensburg coach Mike Peters said. "The biggest thing I saw tonight, they didn't get down after that three-run home run. Their body language was good and they were confident. I heard girls saying 'Hey it's a new ballgame, it's a tie game, we're home let's go get this.'"
Fetter and Coy both finished the game with three RBIs, while Amber Orndorff and Maddie Miller each batted one in for the Greyhounds.
Shippensburg had a well-rounded effort from its offense, with every batter appearing on base at least once, but the Greyhounds also stranded six runners on bases.