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High School Softball:
Cherokee Saves the Best For Last, Captures S.J. Group 4 Title

Thursday, May 29, 2003

By Crystal Parker
SJSports Staff Writer

Dramatic finishes tend to stick around in our minds for quite some time. Most of us have imagined being put in a situation to win a big game for their team, especially during the playoffs. Well the stage was set for the Lady Chiefs' softball team as for six full innings they could not score a single run against Rancocas Valley's Lisa Sweeney. Cherokee's bat finally came alive during their last at bat and scored the decisive run when Jackie Taylor's single scored Tina Roth for the 3-2 come from behind victory.

Rancocas Valley started this championship game out the way they wanted. Getting those first runs of the game, especially when you have a hard throwing Sweeney on the mound, always gives the rest of the team confidence that they can produce runs. Sheri Bienek’s provided the big hit when she nailed a pitch over the fence for a two run home run and the lead. That’s when Sweeney settled in and was able to keep Cherokee off of the scoreboard recording six strikeouts.

After the Chiefs watched those two runners crossed the plate in the first inning that would be the last time it would be done during this game. Danielle Cohen for the rest of the game settled herself down and allowed only four hits and striking out 11 batters. Rancocas Valley would own a 2-0 lead up until the seventh inning when Cohen scored along with Alisha Gonzales to tie the game at two. That’s when Taylor was able to come up with the big hit and send the Lady Chiefs to the state semifinals.

Photos by Mark Fletcher

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