The Olentangy Berlin softball team came agonizingly close to its first league title in program history, but saw host Thomas Worthington strike for three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to rally for a 9-8 win Monday in Worthington.
A win would’ve given the Bears a share of the Cardinal-Division title. The loss, coupled with first-place Marysville’s 7-4 win over Olentangy, forced them to settle for runner-up honors instead.
Berlin led 8-6 when the game, which got its start on Friday, was postponed due to inclement weather in the bottom of the sixth. When play resumed Monday afternoon, the Bears maintained control as pitcher Kali Bateman worked around a walk with a strikeout and back-to-back fly outs.
Berlin went down in order in the seventh, but still led by the two-run spread with three outs to go. Those outs never came, though, at least not the one that mattered most as Thomas rallied for the walk-off win.
Emma McNeilly singled to get things started and, after Bateman coaxed a ground out, Ally Mannello and Grace Schmidt connected on back-to-back hits to slice the deficit in half. Olivia Ankrom them reached via an infield single to load the bases.
Bateman got the next batter to ground out to third baseman Payton Caldwell, who fired a strike to catcher Addie Young to get the lead runner, but couldn’t slam the door entirely. The next batter, Sophia Rond, battled to a full count before working a walk to force in the tying run. Ankrom then scored on a wild pitch to seal the deal.
Izzie Wilson and Ava Kresak, the first and second hitters in the order, respectively, led Berlin at the plate. Wilson was 3-for-3 with three runs while Kresak was 3-for-4 with two runs and three knocked in. Jocelyn Franz was also steady, finishing with two RBI in the setback.
Buckeye Valley 17, Bexley 0, 5 inn.
The Barons stayed perfect in league play with another dominant display, this time a lopsided win over the visiting Lions Monday in Delaware.
Lilly Irvine threw a no-hitter, striking out eight in five innings of work.
Courtney Beneke and Taylor Williams led the way at the plate. Beneke finished 3-for-4 with four runs and an RBI while Williams had three hits, a run and three RBI.
Delaware Christian 18, Worthington Christian 2
The Eagles put the finishing touches on a lopsided non-league win with nine seventh-inning runs Monday at Worthington Christian.
Emma Rindfuss had four hits to go with four runs and three RBI while Katie Neuhart had three hits, three runs and three RBI. Olivia Rideout was also solid at the dish, finishing 2-for-4 with three runs and three knocked in.
Krista Haskins earned the complete-game win in the circle, allowing six runs, three earned, on seven hits while striking out eight.
Delaware Hayes 11, Worthington Kilbourne 0, 5 inn.
The Pacers scored five runs in the first inning and cruised from there, rolling to a league win over the visiting Wolves Monday in Delaware.
Myaih Cloud had a monster game at the plate, finishing with two home runs and four RBI. Lauren Tompkins, who was 3-for-3, also homered in the win.
Kassy Stefanski was nearly unhittable in the circle. She allowed just one hit while striking out nine in five scoreless innings of action.
Marysville 7, Olentangy 4
The state-ranked Monarchs scored three times in the final two innings to pull away for a league win over the visiting Braves Monday in Marysville.
Emma Willers led Olentangy with three hits, two runs and an RBI while Abri Schmutz and Tareyn Born had two hits apiece to lead Marysville.
Olentangy plated a run in the third to even things up and broke things open with a three-run fifth on the way to a 7-2 league win over Dublin Jerome Monday in Dublin.
The Braves, who earned an outright OCC-Cardinal championship with the win, got a strong start from Austin Sizemore, who allowed two runs on six hits while striking out eight in the complete-game win.
Nathan Holycross helped from the plate, finishing with three hits and two RBI.
Delaware Hayes 8, Franklin Heights 1
Austin Dowell finished 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI and Hunter Woolum had two hits and knocked in a pair to lead the Pacers past the host Golden Falcons Monday in Columbus.
Dalton Allen earned the win on the mound, allowing an unearned run on four hits while striking out four in six innings.
Also: Canal Winchester 7, Big Walnut 3; Marysville 10, Olentangy Berlin 2; Hilliard Bradley 13, Olentangy Orange 4; Olentangy Liberty 11, Hilliard Davidson 1, 6 inn.
Delaware Hayes 20, Big Walnut 10.