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Knights rally for walkoff win over Crandon

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Norway sophomore Kara Stanchina (25) fires a pitch towards home plate against Crandon on Monday at Marion Park. (Sean Chase/Daily News photo)

NORWAY — As the innings passed at Marion Park, things were looking dismal for the Norway varsity softball team as it took on Crandon on Monday.

However, the Knights didn’t give up hope and manufactured enough runs to secure a 5-4 win off a steal from sophomore Kara Stanchina.

“The last play, I’ll give that credit to Kara (Stanchina) because she looked at me and she motioned like they’re not covering,” Norway head coach Bob ‘Kuba’ Bal said, “… That’s what the game came down to. Kara’s only a sophomore, but she doesn’t play like it.”

They in fact weren’t ready for Stanchina to take off for third and the Cardinals’ catcher overthrew the third baseman allowing Stanchina to break for home and easily score.

Stanchina also picked up the win on the bump for the Knights. She struck out eight in four innings of work.

Norway’s Tessa Castelaz (0) loads up her swing on Monday at Marion Park. (Sean Chase/Daily News photo)

Freshman Jordyn Moln started the game for Norway.

She struck out two in three innings.

Crandon took control early with a two-run homer in the top of the first.

The Cardinals added to their total with two outs in the second, making it a 4-0 Crandon advantage.

“They jumped out on us, 4-nothing, and we could have folded,” Bal said. “I told the girls, ‘We’re growing. We’re starting to turn the corner.’ It’s going to take some time, the corner is a big corner. … As long as they’re making progress, that’s all we’re asking for.”

The Knights began to make their move in the bottom of the third inning. It started with back-to-back walks from Allie Grable and Olivia Kraemer which Anna Debidart followed with a bunt single that loaded the bases. Stanchina drew a walk and plated Norway’s first run of the game.

A passed ball scored Kraemer and the Knights cut the deficit to 4-2.

Norway would add a run in the fifth and sixth, setting up Stanchina’s heroics in the seventh.

Although the Knights are a young team, Bal is happy with the growth he sees from his team on the basepaths.

“None of our runs were really given to us,” Bal said. “In the first two games, against Bark River, we were picked off four or five times. Now, we’re making plays and catching on. I’m super happy. … I’m ecstatic, it was a great night.”

Offensively, Norway received contributions from Elizabeth Romitti (1 for 4, 1 stolen base), Stanchina (2 RBIs, 2 walks, 1 stolen base), Moln (1 for 3, 1 walk, 1 stolen base), Tessa Castelaz (1 for 3, 1 stolen base), Grable (1 RBI, 1 walk), Kraemer (1 walk) and Debidart (1 for 2).

The Knights took on North Dickinson in a Skyline Central Conference clash on Tuesday and will return to action on Thursday at 3 p.m. when they head to Hancock.

BADGERS 1, BOBCATS 0

NIAGARA, Wis. — It was a pitching duel in Niagara, Wis. on Monday as the Niagara varsity softball team took on Florence.

The Badgers found a way to break through in the sixth inning and picked up a 1-0 victory over the Bobcats.

“It was a defensive battle from start to finish,” Badgers head coach Joe Champeau said. “Sweig and Wood both pitched gems for their teams. Sweig has continued her consistent dominance on the mound for us this season.

“She throws a lot of strikes and our fielders are making the plays.”

Elesia Sweig picked up the win on the bump for Niagara. She struck out six and walked two in seven innings of work.

“The Niagara and Florence rivalry is always a competitive contest,” coach Champeau said. “We’ve lost some close games this year and it sure was nice to get one of these close ones.”

Aiva Champeau (1 for 2, 1 walk, 1 stolen base) recorded the Badgers only hit in the contest.

Offensively, Florence received contributions from Isabella Millan (1 for 3), Vicki Peterson (1 for 3, 1 walk), Leighton Lambert (1 stolen base) and Quinn Cassidy (1 for 2).

Niagara heads to Coleman, Wis. on Thursday for a 4:30 p.m. game while Florence is at home against Three Lakes/Phelps at 5 p.m.



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