They admitted they were nervous.
Shakamak enjoyed an 8-4 lead over Clay City heading into the final inning of the Clay City Sectional championship Wednesday night. However, the first three Lady Eels reached base on a walk and two singles. All of the Lady Lakers knew Clay City had scored seven runs in the seventh inning Tuesday night to edge North Central 13-12.
“I was getting nervous,” said winning pitcher Jona Lash.
“Absolutely,” senior Jesylan Lambermont replied when asked if she was nervous in the seventh. “They’re good at coming back.”
Senior third baseman Kaitlynne Gilbert also admitted she had a case of butterflies.
Shakamak coach B.A. Shipman called the team to the pitcher’s mound at one point in the seventh to talk to the players.
“He told us to just calm down and play our best and get outs,” Lash said.
They did. The first out came when a grounder struck a runner between second and third and interference was called. The second came on a groundout to second that scored Clay City’s last run. Lash whiffed a batter for the third.
And Shakamak had an 8-6 win and the sectional trophy.
“It was hard,” said sophomore right fielder Kaycee Burris who made several superb catches and scored Shakamak’s final run. “I just knew we had to battle and fight through because we were at the end.”
“I’m so happy,” center fielder Maddeline Gilbert said as she hugged Lash in the celebration after the game.
“I’m proud of everyone on our team,” said sophomore shortstop Morgan Yeryar who drove in four runs, “especially for our seniors and the coach. I’m glad for all of us.”
“I wouldn’t want to do it with anyone else,” Burris said.