Park View Beats No. 1
Having already suffered through one late-game rally and eventual defeat at the hands of No. 1 Loudoun Valley this season, Park View's softball players weren't about to take anything for granted Friday in Sterling.
So after the Patriots had hung on for a 3-2 victory -- the Vikings' first loss of the season -- there was no holding back the celebration.
"We had them the first time, and we let it get away," said senior shortstop Sheryl Wilson. "This time we got them back."
Trailing 1-0 at the end of the first inning, Park View (14-5, 9-4 Dulles District) methodically crossed one runner over home plate in the second, third and fourth to take a 3-1 lead. Loudoun Valley (18-1, 12-1) made it interesting, scoring in the fifth on an RBI single by designated hitter Samantha Miller, but did not manage any more.
With the tying run perched on third base and two outs in the seventh inning, Park View sophomore Brittany Gardner induced a high infield fly ball for the final out.
"She got tough when she had to," Loudoun Valley Coach Joe Spicer said of Gardner. "We'd get runners in scoring position, but then she'd buckle down. She did her job well."
In Playoffs, a Home Base
Broad Run's baseball team took over sole possession of third place in the Dulles District with a 7-2 victory over Loudoun County on Thursday, knocking the Raiders into fourth place with two regular-season games remaining. The top four seeds in the upcoming Dulles District tournament -- which for the first time will include all eight teams -- will earn home dates in the opening round.
"The most important thing for us was to make sure we host a home playoff game, and with this win that's now definite," said Broad Run Coach Pat Cassidy. "That was important to us. It was also important for me to see how we played today.
"After a tough loss to Dominion [on Tuesday] the guys could have laid down and hung their heads, but they came back and beat a team that had beaten us earlier this year. I hope that gives us some real momentum headed into the end of the season."
Tied at 2 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Broad Run took a one-run lead on an RBI single by junior Joey Devlin. The Spartans then broke the game open with four more runs in the sixth, including a two-RBI single to left field by junior Craig Tait and an RBI double by sophomore Conor Mullee.
Junior Kyle Hopeck (2-0, two saves) picked up the win for Broad Run (14-4, 9-4). Hopeck yielded six hits, struck out six and walked one.
Selvage Throws Perfect Game
Liberty junior Mandy Selvage pitched the first perfect game in school history in a 7-0 victory over Millbrook on Thursday. Selvage struck out seven batters in retiring all 21 she faced, with her defense playing flawlessly behind her.
"Mandy looked good from the very beginning of warmups to the last pitch of the game," Liberty Coach Charlie Padgett said. "She had great command of all of her pitches and consistently stayed ahead of the batters."
Bailey Manuel led the offense, going 3 for 5 at the plate, and Paige Wakefield added a home run.
The Eagles have won six in a row and maintained their one-game lead over Northwestern District rival Fauquier entering the final game of the regular season.
-- ANGELA WATTS