All eyes in Clarksville fell on the umpires Saturday when River Hill sophomore Courtney “Coco” Colosimo’s high-altitude hit down the first base line finished its ascent on the chalk in the bottom of the seventh inning against Mount Hebron.
The umpires swung their arms in play, ruling the hit fair, and Colosimo made it to third base before she could celebrate a winning two-run swat that delivered the Hawks a 6-5 win over the Vikings in the Maryland 3A East Region final.
Colosimo took a strike before loading up on the pitch she wanted and sending River Hill to the state semifinals.
“I just saw it kind of coming outside, and I was like, ‘Yes, I really want to hit that one.’ So then I hit it,” she said. “I would hope it was fair.”
With a prime vantage point in the opposing dugout, Mount Hebron Coach Chuck Struhar confirmed the ruling on the field.
“It was fair. I had a great view of it,” Struhar said. “The girl hits the ball. It landed on the line. It was over.”
The Hawks (17-4) piled on early, scoring four runs in the first inning, but River Hill couldn’t get on the board again until the seventh.
By that time, Mount Hebron (20-6) had come within an out of completing the comeback.
Trailing by three runs in the top of the sixth, Vikings center fielder Aaliyah Montague-Bass singled and scored on an error that allowed Erin Vogan to reach base. Rachel Cadigan then singled, and pinch-hitter Anna Sutherland doubled to score them both and tie the game at 4.
Mount Hebron took a one-run lead in the seventh when Maddie Bennett drove in Bridgett Vogan, but defense would doom the Vikings.
River Hill sophomore Kinsey Johnson reached base on a single before a groundout gave the Hawks two outs. Kallan Dirmeyer put a ball in play with a dribbler up the middle, and Mount Hebron’s pitcher fumbled the exchange to the first baseman.
“I thought we had them,” Struhar said. “If we get just a little bleeder here, we have it, but that’s the way the game is played.”
Dirmeyer stayed aggressive on the base paths, taking second on the misplay to put the winning run in scoring position. Colosimo came up and hit the ball that ended the game.
River Hill has won each of its three postseason games by one run. The Hawks will face Northern, the winner of the past five Maryland 3A state championships, Tuesday at the Bachman Softball Complex.
“Someone’s got to take them down,” River Hill Coach Marni Rosenbaum said. “Hopefully it will be us.”