Before one of his players steps up to the plate, Canastota softball coach Tony Patterelli reminds her that "it's all about the fight."
In Monday's Class B-2 semifinal against General Brown, the no. 1 seed Raiders fought, all right - for 10 innings - before coming out on top, 7-6.
After two scoreless innings, the Lions struck first in the top of the third.
With one out, Chelsea Cavailer belted a bomb into deep left field, going over the fence for a home run. Following suit, Jessica Niles drove in another two runs in the top of the third as GB took a 3-0 lead.
However, the Raiders retaliated in the bottom of the third. After a slap infield single from Valerie Baer, Jessica Patterelli joined her on base, due to an infield error. With two runners in scoring position, Liz McGinley's single drove them both home.
Patterelli struck again in the fifth inning with a two-run triple, hitting home Baer and Alexis Havens. Moments later, Alicia Hibbard's RBI single scored Patterelli, and the Raiders had a 5-3 lead.
Refusing to succumb to the Raiders' wrath, GB pitcher Erica Hovey struck at the plate in the sixth inning. With runners on first and second from two walks that McGinley issued, Hovey's sixth-inning single scored both runs, tying it 5-5 -- and setting up a four-inning stalemate.
Canastota called to the bullpen for Patterelli to replace McGinley the seventh inning, while Hovey remained on the mound for the Lions through all 10 innings, finshing with 11 strikeouts.
Despite sporadic chances -- a single in the seventh inning, and two hits in the bottom of the ninth -- the Raiders were unable to bring those runners home and end it.
According to the international tiebreaker rule, once a game progresses past the ninth inning, the team batting starts the inning with a runner on second.