By: Ashley Birchmeier
TIFFIN — Senior Kelly Sheridan hits a walk-off single to lead Ohio Northern softball as they defeated Capital 3-2 in an elimination game Saturday afternoon in game 5 of the Ohio Athletic Conference Tournament at Frann's Field.
The Polar Bears (23-13 overall) advance to play the top-seeded Heidelberg at 2 pm. The Polar Bears must defeat Heidelberg twice in order to claim the OAC Tournament crown.
In the bottom of the tenth inning, Sheridan hit an RBI single down the right field line that scored junior Amanda Lahti and secured the ONU victorty.
Sheridan went 3-for-4 in the game with 1 RBI.
After four scoreless innings of play the Polar Bears were finally able to plate the games first run as Sheridan laid down a sac bunt that scored freshman Gia Saturday giving ONU the 1-0 advantage.
Capital threatened the Polar Bears lead in the top of the sixth as they had runners in scoring position, but freshman pitcher Kirsten Lightel was able to retire the Crusaders and hold on to the 1-0 lead.
The Crusaders, facing elimination, were able to plate the tying run in the top of the 7th as senior Brooke Billings recorded an RBI knotting the score at 1-1.
In extra innings, Capital was finally able to break the tie as they capitalized on a costly throwing error by Lightel, in the top of the ninth, to score a run and take its first lead of the game, 2-1.
The Polar Bears responded in the bottom half of the inning as senior Jamie Westenkirchner hit an RBI single that scored Sheridan locking the score at 2-2 and extending the game.
After the Northern defense retired the Crusaders in the top of the tenth, the Polar Bear offense went to work.
With two outs in the bottom of the 10th, Lahti hit a double to right center before Sheridan drove her in with a walk-off single to win the game 3-2.
Northern, facing an elimination game, squares off with tournament host Heidelberg at 2 pm in game 6 of the OAC Softball Tournament.