Medina wins thriller over top seed Eden to capture first sectional softball championship

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 25 May 2017 at 10:58 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Medina players and coaches poise with the sectional trophy and banner after nipping top seeded Eden 5-4 this evening at Williamsville North for the Mustangs first ever sectional softball championship.

Surviving a huge last inning scare, No. 3 seed Medina nipped No. 1 Eden 5-4 in the Section VI Class B2 title game this evening at Williamsville North earning the Mustangs their first ever sectional softball championship.

The victory advances Medina to a May 30 meeting with B1 champion Depew for the Section VI Class B berth in the state playoffs.  That game will be at 5 p.m. at Williamsville North. Top seeded Depew defeated No. 2 Alden 2-0 for the B1 title.

Ashlee Howell bangs out a hit for Medina.

Leading 5-1, Medina saw Eden rally for three runs in the bottom of the seventh on two walks, two singles and an error to slice the deficit to just one.

However, Medina pitcher Emily Kams and her defensive mates weathered the storm by getting the next three batters out on a grounder back to Kams, a pop out to Kams and a pop out to Lacey Kenward at second to lock up the title.

“It’s an amazing win for us,” said Kams. “No words can describe how hard everyone on the team has worked for this. Everyone on the team has just worked so hard all season.”

“They’ve worked their tails off all season,” agreed Mustangs Coach Amber Cleaveland.”And they’re getting better all the time.”

Breaking away from a scoreless deadlock, Medina erupted for 4 runs in the top of the sixth inning. A fielders choice play off the bat of Alyssa Beyer opened the scoring. Destiny Satkowski followed up with an RBI single and then Alisha Scroger banged out a two-run double.  An error and a bunt single by Brandi Guild ignited the uprising.

Mustang captains Kayla Cuadra, Nicole Cooper, Emily Kams and Lexi Neuman hold up the sectional championship trophy.

Eden answered with a run in the home half of the frame but Medina got that one back in the top of the seventh for what proved to be the game winner as Ryenn Oliver tripled and came home on a sacrifice fly by Kenward.

Both teams had plenty of big scoring opportunities earlier.

Medina left runners stranded at second and third in the first inning after a walk and a bunt single by Ashlee Howell.

The Mustangs then got the bases loaded in the third after an error, a hit batter and a walk but could not capitalize. Runners were also left stranded at third in both the fourth and fifth frames.

Eden likewise left runners stranded at second and third in the first as Guild caught a line shot at first base for the final out.  The Lady Raiders then loaded the bases in the second but Kams and Scroger at shortstop combined to turn a huge inning ending double play as an Eden squeeze bunt attempt misfired.

The Lady Raiders again loaded the bases in the fourth on two walks and a hit batter but couldn’t capitalize as Medina got out of the jam on a pop out to Kenward.

Medina, which last reached the sectional finals in 1983, advances to the overall Class B final with a 13-4 record.

Medina first baseman Brandi Guild stretches to make an out.

Medina players surround pitcher Emily Kams after the Mustangs earned the final out of the narrow win over Eden.