Chapin is the only Midlands entry assured of playing for a Class 3A district hampionship on Wednesday. Brookland-Cayce, Swansea, Airport and Lugoff-Elgin, on the other hand, are facing expulsion from the playoffs on Monday.
Chapin advanced to the 3A District IV finals by edging Union County 1-0 in nine inning in second-round play on Friday. It was the Eagles’ second hair-raising, extra-inning inning post season win in as many days. Chapin edged Chapin 4-3 in 10 innings in the district opener on Thursday.
Eagles Taylor Morgan went the distance for the win again, upping her record to 11-0 in process. Whitley Martin delivered the game-winning hit in the bottom of the ninth inning. It was the second game-winning hit for the sophomore in as many days. Chapin started the bottom of the ninth with Chelsea Frick at second base, per international tie-breaker rules. Frick moved up with third on a bunt by Jenna Taylor and was replaced by pinch runner Olivia Fitts. After Barr fanned for the second out, Martin ripped the game-winning hit up the middle.
The Eagles will have a rematch with either UC or Clinton Wednesday at home.
In more pressing matters, Brookland-Cayce hosts Region 5-3A rival Swansea on Monday is a District VI elimination game, Airport hosts Marlboro County for the right to play Midland Valley again in the District V finale and Lugoff-Elgin hits the road for a rematch with Chapman, which thumped the Demons 11-0 in the District III opening round on Thursday.
B-C finds itself in an all-too-familiar position. The Bearcats lost in the second round last season to defending state champion St. James, and needed a Herculean effort to come back to win a district title and advance to the Lower State championship tournament. The same scenario is facing Richard Lundy’s veteran team this season after the Bearcats fell 1-0 to defending state champion Darlington on Saturday in the second round of District VI.
Talk about a bitter setback. Chandler Terrapin and Darlington’s Sarah Hardee were hooked up in a scoreless duel until Scarlett Morgan delivered a two-out, game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh inning. B-C out-hit Darlington 5-3, but could not find the plate. It was the third 1-0 loss by the Beatcats in high-stakes games this season – two of them coming in the Region 5-3A pennant race against Midland Valley.
Swansea was dealt a similar blow vs. Darlington in the first round on Thursday. The Falcons scored the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning on a Tigers error. Hardee tossed a two-hitter with eight strikeouts, while Swansea’s Miranda RogersAllowed just four hits and fanned 10. Rogers and the Tigers rebounded with a 10-5 loser’s bracket win on Saturday. Rogers was the winner in the circle again, and also went 4-for-4 at the dish.
Airport opened District V play with a 10-0 win over Camden as Lauren Phillips picked up the decision in the circle and had two hits, but the Eagles fell for the third time to Region 5-3A champion Midland Valley, 3-0 on Saturday. Airport had runners in scoring position in each of the first two innings, but could not score against Mustangs ace Courtney Howell, who finished with a four-hit shutout. The Eagles can earn another crack at MV by beating Marlboro County in an elimination game tonight.
Lugoff-Elgin survived to play another day by eliminating Chester 7-1 on Saturday. Kelsey Nichols improved to 6-4 with the win in the circles, while Savannah Corder, Kayla Hughes and Jennifer Brasington all had two safeties. Hughes smacked a home run.