Glencoe edges Eagles in softball semis

HILLSBORO — Eagle Point staged two comebacks in the Class 5A state softball semifinals against Glencoe Tuesday. But it wasn't quite enough to force an all-Southern Sky championship matchup Saturday at the Oregon State University softball complex.

Glencoe, the Northwest Oregon Conference champion, scored the winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning to defeat the Eagles 5-4.

The Crimson Tide (24-3) will face Southern Sky titlist Crater, a 4-0 winner against Corvallis, in Saturday's state championship game.

"We put ourselves in a tough position," said Eagle Point coach Keith Williams, whose team played from behind most of the game. "We couldn't get the lead. They were able to hang in there, then pushed across that run in the eighth."

Eagle Point starting pitcher Kirsten Emigh (16-5) walked Meghan Derdinger to start the victorious rally. Derdinger went to second on a wild pitch and, one out later, moved to third on a passed ball. After Ashlie Allison walked and took second without a play, Britnee Sheridan singled on a fly ball over the head of pulled in right fielder Kayla Mathis to score the winning run.

"Emigh seemed to lose her rhythm a little bit," Williams said of the senior pitcher in the eighth. "She couldn't seem to locate the drop ball for a couple of batters. It could have been a little bit of fatigue. She's thrown a lot of innings in the playoffs."

Dacia Hall smacked a two-out, two-run homer in the first to give the Crimson Tide the initial lead, but the Eagles (20-9) answered back in the second.

Emigh opened with a double and Ashley Josephson singled and went to second on the play to put runners at second and third. Tenille Anderson provided a sacrifice fly and Brooke Griggs delivered an RBI single to knot the score at 2-all.

"We were a little shell-shocked from that two-out home run in the first," said Williams. "We were pretty tight to start out. When we got the runs to tie it up, we were much more relaxed and played our normal game."

Derdinger gave the Crimson Tide a 3-2 lead with a leadoff home run in the second, and Glencoe went up 4-2 with a run in the fourth.

After that Emigh found a groove and allowed just one hit through three shutout innings.

"Early on (Emigh) didn't have her best stuff," said Williams. "She seemed to hit her stride and had better pop on the ball. Glencoe is a good hitting ballclub. They put the bat on the ball and make you make plays."

The Eagles pulled even in the sixth when Emigh hit the second pitch of the inning over the right-center field fence and Josephson followed one pitch later with a home run in almost the same spot.

"Most of the year we've been able to come back and win games so the kids believe in themselves," said Williams. "It would have been nice to get the lead and put pressure on them to see how they would react."

Emigh paced the offense with the double and home run, and Josephson and Katie Jolliffe added two hits each.

"We've accomplished quite a bit," said Williams. "This is the furthest any Eagle Point softball team has ever gone."

Eagle Point 020 002 00 — 4 9 2

Glencoe 210 100 01 — 5 7 0

Emigh and Griggs; Brown, Anderson (3) and Derdinger. W — Anderson. L — Emigh. 2B — EP: Emigh. HR — EP: Emigh, Josephson; G: Hall, Derdinger.

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