LAKE PLACID - In a tense game that saw each team claw back from late deficits, Saranac Lake edged Lake Placid 3-2 Monday during an eight-inning contest under the lights on the Blue Bombers field.
A number of players came up big for the Red Storm, who benefited from some timely singles, solid defense and strong pitching from both starter Brittany Tschirhart and Nicole Viscardo.
Although the Blue Bombers only got six hits and committed seven errors, they hung tough all the way with the Red Storm, who collected 14 hits in the matchup. The game went scoreless through the first four innings, with Saranac Lake jumping ahead with a single run in the top of the fifth. Lake Placid rallied with a pair of runs in the sixth inning to take a 2-1 lead, only to have the visitors tie the game with a run in the seventh. The Red Storm got the game-winner in the top of the eighth and Viscardo then put the Blue Bombers down in order in the bottom of the frame to secure the win.
Saranac Lake junior Jennifer Ward bunts the ball during Monday’s game in Lake Placid.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)
"Every time we play Lake Placid, I think it brings out the best in both teams," Saranac Lake head coach Diana Schwartz said. "These games always seem to be close. Solid defense got it done for us today. We were nearly mistake-free in the field, which was huge."
Jordy McDougall scored two runs for Saranac Lake, including the game-winner. Viscardo, who came to relieve Tschirhart in the fifth inning, also reached home for the Red Storm with the tying run in the seventh that sent the contest into an extra inning.
Saranac Lake pushed the game's first run across the plate with two outs in the top of the fifth. McDougall singled to reach base in the frame, and was eventually knocked home on a single by senior catcher Jen McGuoirk.
The Blue Bombers surged ahead in the sixth on runs by Taylor Maiorca and Hayes, who both led off the inning with hits. Maiorca singled and stole second, and then scored Lake Placid's first run when Hayes smacked a double. Emily Godin then knocked Hayes home with an infield sacrifice grounder to deadlock the game.
Facing a one-run deficit, Saranac Lake came through in the seventh, which started when Viscardo reached first on an error, and made it to third base on a pair of passed balls. Tschirhart then batted Viscardo home with a RBI single to make it a 2-2 contest.
With a chance to win it in their final at-bat, the Blue Bombers went down in order as the game advanced into the eighth inning. For the second time in the game, Saranac Lake put a big run across the plate with two outs. After leadoff batter Megan Moody grounded to second and Brittany Woodruff lined out to Lake Placid shortstop Maiorca, McDougall reached base with her second single of the game. She then advanced to second on a passed ball and scored on a bloop single that Viscardo dropped behind first base and just inside the foul line.
Holding a 3-2 lead, Viscardo and her defense retired the side in the bottom of the eighth to clinch the win and improve to 6-1 in the Champlain Valley Athletic Conference. Meanwhile, the Blue Bombers suffered another close loss and dropped to 1-4 in league play.
"It was a pretty good game," Lake Placid coach Donna Moody said. "We just gave Saranac Lake opportunities with some costly errors. The positive side is that we battled back."
"Not only did Brittany and Nicole come through pitching for us, they came up big at the plate," Schwartz said. "Brittany tied it and Nicole won it."
Both teams return to respective division play Wednesday. The Red Storm hosts Plattsburgh in a Division I showdown of teams with just one loss. At the same time, Lake Placid will be playing in Moriah. Both contests are slated to start at 4:30 p.m.
Saranac Lake 3, Lake Placid 2
Tschirhart, Viscardo (5) and McGuoirk. Hayes and Taylor. WP - Viscardo. LP - Hayes. 2B - Moody (SL), Hayes (LP).