D-West rallies twice to beat Interboro

Downingtown — After a 30 minute rain delay, No. 11 seed Downingtown West and No. 22 seed Interboro took the field for the opening round of the District 1 Class AAAA playoffs. The Whippets erased a four-run deficit to edge off the Buccaneers 6-5.

They now move onto the second round to face a familiar foe, six-seeded Avon Grove on the road on Wednesday.

“We’ve been waiting years for a postseason win,’ West coach Joey Germani said. “It’s really good to see. We’ve put in a lot of hard work over the year and it’s paying off.’

Interboro (13-8) led off the top of the first with a bunt-base hit, a bloop single into shallow left field, and an infield hit to set up a bases-loaded no outs situation. The next batter, Mel Chubb, hit a chopper to shortstop Marissa Sesse who threw home but it was not in time giving Interboro a 1-0 lead. Annette Holmonbollar followed with a ground ball that kicked off second baseman Ashley Burgette’s glove, scoring two runs to make it 3-0.

Becca Reifer made it 4-0 after she hit into a 6-5 fielders choice.

The Whippets (15-6) responded in their half of the first. With one out, Seese singled. She scored after Jamie Rothenberger delivered her first of two triples.

“Today’s comeback was really big for us,’ Rothenberger said. “We were able to get our bats going. I think we each just tried to focus on one pitch.’

Rothenberger was cut down at home after an Emily Williams grounder to third. After an Amanda Seckinger single set up first and second with two outs, Alicia Wagner cut the Bucs lead to 4-3 when she blasted a two-run double.

“We knew we just had to stay relaxed and stay focused if we wanted to get back into the game,’ Wagner said.

Burgette singled to advance Wagner to third. The senior scored the tying run when on a Gianna Melillo cue shot that hugged the first-base line.

The Bucs regained the lead in the top of the second. After they loaded the bases with two outs, Becca Reifer poked a single into left field that made the score 5-4.

Interboro maintained its lead until the bottom of the fourth. At this point, the Whippets were able to work their magic and piece together another two-out rally. With Ally Scullin on first base, Sesse and Rothenberger each singled to load the bases for Williams.

The pitcher helped her cause by roping a double up the middle that scored Scullin and Sesse.

West held onto the 6-5 lead thanks to their strong pitching. Williams only allowed one hit between the third and fourth inning. Sasse came on in relief and earned the save, throwing three scoreless innings and fanning three batters.

“I just focused on my mechanics,’ Williams said. “I had to worry about myself and trust that my defense would take care of me.’

Defeating Maggie Balint and Ches-Mont League champion Red Devils will be a tall task for the Whippets but they are one of the only two league teams that defeated Avon Grove in the regular season.

“We just need to hit,’ Williams said. “If we can get on base and play solid defense we can win.’


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