WESTMINSTER, Md. – A stellar pitching performance from Katie Wenger and a clutch RBI single from Ryan Correa delivered Franklin & Marshall a 1-0 victory over Gettysburg and its first-ever Centennial Conference (CC) Softball Championship in Saturday afternoon's second game.
The Diplomats moved to 17-21 after falling 3-0 in game one, and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament with the Conference Championship. F&M will learn its NCAA path tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. with the airing of the NCAA DIII Softball Selection Show.
Click here to watch the selection show.
Correa came through with the most important hit of the day, supplying the lone RBI in the fourth inning of the winner-take-all second game. Following singles from Megan Ryan and Wenger, Correa singled through the right side with two outs to drive in Ryan and give the Diplomats a 1-0 lead.
That lead proved to be enough for Wenger, who finished with three clutch scoreless innings to notch a four-hit, complete-game shutout. The final out came after Gettysburg sent a line drive into right field that should have been good for a single, but Ryan fielded the ball on the run from her position in right and fired a strike to Lexi Piccinich at first for the clinching 9-3 putout.
Click here to see the Diplomats record the final out.
F&M did not record a hit other than the three in the fourth inning, but the Diplomats defense stepped up with several excellent plays. Highlights included two inning-ending, 5-3 double plays engineered by F&M's Erin Russell in the first and third innings.
Wenger improved to 6-9 with the elimination-game victory.
Ryan, Wenger, and Correa accounted for the F&M hits in the game.
Correa's RBI single earned her tournament MVP honors, accumulating a .364 average on the weekend with four important RBIs, and catching all four games behind the plate for the Diplomats.
Wins in the first two games of the tournament gave F&M two chances to beat Gettysburg for the CC Title. The Diplomats ended up needing two attempts, falling to the Bullets 3-0 in the first game before ultimately claiming the Crown.
Stay tuned to GoDiplomats.com for more information about F&M's NCAA draw as it becomes available.