In February, first year McNamara softball coach Angelina Diehlmann claimed that her team would be “on the map” by the end of the season. Not too many believed her, but she stuck to her word and came one run away from perfecting her vision.
After a shaky 2-6 start to the season, a spark was lit in the team and a massive win streak ensued, beginning with a 7-1 victory over Good Counsel. The Lady Mustangs won the next nine games and rode their way into the championship on a ten-game win streak.
The WCAC Championship game took place at Robert E. Taylor Stadium at the University of Maryland on Saturday, May 14, and pitted the Lady Mustangs against the Knights of Bishop O’Connell.
The McNamara squad has been led primarily by the nine seniors on the team, especially catcher Rose Shaver, who went 4-for-4 including a huge double to set up a scoring run, and shortstop Stephanie Ayres, who had two incredible diving catches for outs early in the game. The effort of these two along with the rest of the team gave the Lady Mustangs a commanding 3-0 lead going into the bottom of the fifth. This is where the game turned against the Mustangs.
When O’Connell catcher Jillian Ferraro stepped up to bat, she was aiming for a routine base hit, but ending up getting a triple following a McNamara error, which also sent two runners home to make it 3-2. Following another base hit, Ferraro was able to score to tie it up. The Lady Mustangs were unable to score in the sixth, giving O’Connell the momentum for the last few moments of the game. Unfortunately, O’Connell utilized the momentum swing and dominated the bottom of the sixth, keeping runners on all bases throughout the inning. Luckily for the Mustangs, only one runner scored before they were able to get out of the situation, but it was imperative that they scored in the seventh and final inning to keep their hopes alive. Unfortunately, they were unable to do so and O’Connell won their eighth consecutive softball championship.
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