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June 4, 2013

Witches knock out Sentinels for second straight year

MOREAU — Ticonderoga experienced a dose of déjà vu Monday afternoon.

For the second straight season, the Sentinels faced Greenwich in the NYSPHSAA Class C regionals. And just like last year, one bad inning proved costly.

The Witches broke a 1-1 tie with a three-run second inning, and senior southpaw Sarah Heimbach kept Ticonderoga at bay the rest of the way for a 4-1 victory at Moreau Recreational Park.

In 2012, the Sentinels trailed 2-1 after five innings before Greenwich broke through with four runs in the sixth on its way to an eventual state title.

“I thought we hung tough – it was just that one inning,” Ticonderoga co-coach Shelly Young said. “Hopefully we’ll be back here next year and get by them finally.”

That one inning Monday began with Ticonderoga junior starter Kylie Austin giving up a single and two walks to load the bases. Courtney Towne smacked an infield single just past the reach of Austin to score the go-ahead run.

The Witches (22-3) added runs on another infield single and a bases-loaded walk to go up 4-1 before Austin was replaced with senior Jordan McKee. She induced two ground balls to end the inning and didn’t allow a run the rest of the game, but the damage was done.

Austin, whose strong relief pitching helped the Sentinels win the Section VII title game, ended up with the loss. McKee went 42/3 innings, giving up four hits while striking out four and walking none.

“McKee came in and threw a great game,” Young said. “(Kylie) just didn’t get into any kind of groove. I don’t think we waited too long with McKee either, we had to give Kylie a little bit of a chance, but she just didn’t settle in.”

Jaelyn Granger opened up the fourth with a walk, and Hannah Ross reached after getting hit by a pitch with two outs, but Heimbach came through with a big strikeout.

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