By Jeremy McDonald
KEIZER, Ore.– Entering the bottom of the third inning, it seemed as if West Salem was going to put a damper on McNary’s senior night with a 6-1 lead with their offense clicking and the lone scoring blimpish came from a Nadia Witt solo shot in the bottom of the first inning.
“We all came together as a team and we’ve been really working on our hitting lately and that’s definitely attribute as a team, and when we all come together we can make things happen,” said the Titans Taylor Redman who had three RBI’s in the game. “We did that at the beginning of the game and we got down a little bit in the middle and then we came back a few runs but it wasn’t enough.”
West Salem had their own moonshot from Taylor Holmquist to start the third inning, but it was the bottom half of the inning where the Lady Celtics began to climb back into the game where a home run from Abbi Covalt, and a two-run RBI single from Haley Bingenheimer brought the lead to within reach entering the fourth inning at 6-3.
McNary tied the game after Covalt and Alexa Cepeda brought in the tying run to make it 6-6 entering the fifth inning between the two league opponents.
“We had to stay positive as a team and we just worked together to keep each other up and not get down on ourselves,” said Bingenheimer.
Redman gave West back the lead before the Celts took the lead for the first time all game following Covalt’s single as the freshman finished with three RBIs on four hits in Wednesday’s game before Kate Ronning extended the lead to 9-7 entering the seventh.
The Titans didn’t back down as they got runners on base with Aliah Wilsey, who came in for Sage Barnes after her lead off double, at third and advanced Maison Searle to second with two outs on the board and needing two runs to extend the game into the bottom of the seventh.
West Salem did just that as Redman, who gave the Titans the lead in the fifth, tied the game up at nine with a deep double to bring Wilsey and Searle home for the tie as they went to the bottom of the seventh.
But, McNary weren’t going to just let the Lady Titans come in an ruin Senior Night as they saw Emma Kinler and Covalt get on base before Witt drew her third straight walk of the game to load up the bases with no outs.
Cepeda popped out to Nalani Muranaka for the first out with the sophomore in Bingenheimer came up to the dish with the winning run on third.
“I was really nervous,” laughed Bingenheimer was she prepared for Redman’s next pitch. “But I was trying to get a base hit and score a run hopefully.”
On a 0-1 pitch, Bingenheimer connected on a Redman pitch and drove it out as she brought in Kinler for the win.
“I think it’s huge for them, they really worked hard tonight and I think they deserved it, we can carry this momentum into the Sprague game on Friday,” said Bingenheimer.
And as the Celtics honored Witt, Haley Ebner and Kinler, the three shared the moment with the Titans seniors in Muranaka, Redman, Gillian Werner and Amelia White; as they shared a time or two in some variation through ASA Softball.
“When we saw on our schedule that we were going to be at their Senior Night, that was a really big deal for us because I’ve played with the Nadia and Haley for 12 years and their of the my best friends,” said Redman. “It was really special to see their special night and that we got to share it with them and it was really special for everybody.”
“Looking at the schedule before the season I was like, ‘oh my gosh, our Senior Night is against you guys’. So it was really great to play against the girls that we started playing with and especially best to beat them,” said the Celtics Ebner with a laugh.