U.S. Army Europe tournament: Grafenwöhr men, Stuttgart women win with late rallies
Stars and Stripes August 24, 2009
GRAFENWÖHR, Germany – With the Army Europe softball championship on the line, both the men’s and womens’ tournaments ended in dramatic fashion on Sunday.
On the men’s side, Grafenwöhr beat Kaiserslautern in two of the three games, each decided by one run with the final game going extra innings.
On the women’s side, Stuttgart prevailed over Hohenfels, 11-5 in seven innnings in the first game and 6-5 in the second..
Hohenfels led 1-0 led through five innings before Stuttgart answered with a six-run rally in the top of the sixth.
Stuttgart then held off Hohenfels in the final two innings with pitching efforts from Shelly DeRousseau and Kathy Moner for a final score of 6-5.
In the men’s final, Grafenwöhr was coming into the best of three championship series 6-0, and Kaiserslautern, 4-2.
The teams split the first two games, eachin winning on a last-inning rally.
Grafenwöhr came from behind in the last inning to beat Kaiserslautern 15-14 in the opener.
Kaiserslautern wasn’t ready to roll over, however, and in the second game avoided a late comeback by Grafenwöhr. K-town scored six runs in the final inning to tie the game at 12 before Reynard Husband drove in the winning run in the seventh to beat Grafenwöhr 13-12.
So the stage was set for a game three, and it looked early on that Grafenwöhr would take the trophy after taking a 10-5 lead. But Kaiserslautern battled back scoring four runs in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game at 13 before leaving bases loaded with a line out to the short stop.
In extra innings, Grafenwöhr tallied three runs in the top of the inning off four singles and an error. It was up to Kaiserslautern to answer back and they did with two runs, bringing the game to 16-15.
With a runner on second and two outs, Jessy Marley of Kaiserslautern hit a hard ground ball between second and third that was snagged by diving shortstop James Segrue, who fired a low throw to first that was scooped up by first baseman Mike Johnson for the game-ending out.
Segrue, who is headed to the All-Army softball team, said, "I guess they just hit it to the wrong person."
All four teams take on their Air Force counterparts next weekend at Aviano, Italy, in Army-Air Force Final Four.