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Athletics News

Nicole O’Rourke’s walk-off hit keeps Susan Wagner’s softball squad alive

By Charlie De Biase Jr. |

Nicole O’Rourke capped a big game with a walk-off single in the seventh as Susan Wagner advanced to the PSAL AA Gold Division losers’ bracket final via a 5-4 victory over visiting Millennium Tuesday in Sea View.

The No. 3 seeded-Falcons, who received a superb pitching performance from freshman Corinne DeMartini, will now meet No. 2 HS of Construction Thursday at Tudor Park in Queens (tentatively 4:30 p.m.).

"We’re exactly where we want to be,'' said pleased SW coach Marco Altieri, whose team dropped a 10-0 decision to HSC in a opening-round game last week. "We know Construction and we have a mutual respect for each other. We’re obviously going to play to win, just like them.''

O’Rourke, a three-year varsity starter who opened the scoring with a two-run homer in the first, finished with two hits and three RBI against Millennium.

The Falcons watched a 4-1, sixth-inning lead disappear when the visitors received a three-run homer to tie the score.

But Nadia Beck (two hits) opened the home seventh with a single for the Falcons and immediately stole second base. O’Rourke then proceeded to belt a line drive into left-center to plate Beck with the game-winning run.

"Nicole has been working hard in the cage all week, working out a few things with her swing,'' said Altieri, whose team finished with 11 hits overall. "It’s no surprise to me to see her come up with the big hit when we needed it. Once Nadia got on and stole second, I knew Nicole would come through.''

The last-inning win made a winner out of DeMartini, who allowed just one earned run on three hits and a walk in going the distance. The right-hander finished with 10 strikeouts.

"She pitched a solid game,'' said Altieri. "She’s only a freshman, but she’s pitched in some pressure games and has handled it well. Even after they got the three-run homer against her in the sixth (all unearned runs), she bounced back and shut them down in the seventh.''

In addition to O’Rourke and Beck, senior Zoe Cadle finished with two hits, including a long solo homer that gave SW a 4-1 lead in the fourth.

‘That ball went about 270 feet,'’ marveled Altieri. "It was a line drive to center and it hit the track.''

Antonia Greco’s suicide squeeze plated Caitlin Anderson with a third-inning run for the Falcons.