WEST PITTSTON — At this point, all that matters is winning. How victory is achieved really doesn’t matter.
At least it didn’t matter to Wyoming Area, which barely kept its softball season alive Monday afternoon.
Gwen Glatz hit a one-out single to deep left in the bottom of the seventh as Wyoming Area escaped with a 3-2 victory over Crestwood in a District 2 Class 3A first-round game.
Seventh-seeded Wyoming Area (9-6) will head to second-seeded Tunkhannock (13-3) on Wednesday for a quarterfinal game. Crestwood, the 10th seed, ended its year at 5-11.
“You win, you’re in. You lose, you go home,” Wyoming Area coach John McNeil said. “We’re going (on). I don’t know how far, we’ll see. All roads should lead to Tunkhannock on Wednesday unless there’s an upset.”
Speaking of upsets, Crestwood nearly pulled one off despite the odds. The Comets came into the game minus two starters — shortstop Sarah Macko and left fielder Haley Dow. The two girls collided during a game last week against Coughlin. Neither were cleared to play.
Yet, the shorthanded Comets had the go-ahead run on second base in the seventh when Kayla Kulp opened the inning with a bloop double to right. Glatz shut down the threat with a pair of strikeouts and a groundout.
Then the Warriors went about trying to get home a run, something that’s been difficult all season. Bree Bednarski started the seventh with an infield single off the glove of third baseman Morghan Murphy. After a flyout, Kristi Skok lifted a single to right.
Bednarski, the D2-3A 100- and 200-meter girls track and field champion, only made it to second as she had to wait to see if the ball would be caught. It didn’t matter as Glatz blasted a single to left that one-hopped off the fence to score Bednarski as Wyoming Area moved to the quarterfinals for a seventh consecutive year.
“I felt it,” Glatz said. “It was a high pitch and I got my hands up and followed through.”
Wyoming Area could have used a hit like that in the previous two innings when it stranded runners at third base. The inability to get key hits has been a problem this season.
“We’re going to have to tough through it,” Glatz said. “We’ve done pretty well with it so far. Hopefully, we’ll get back into it, get some runners on and around.”
Crestwood freshman pitcher Haley Naperkowski did a nice job working out of trouble on occasion. She gave up a run in the first inning when Bednarski led off with a single and later scored on a single by Glatz. She appeared to be out of trouble in the third, but a throwing error allowed Vicki Remley to score. Remley had doubled.
“There’s no question that pitcher had us off stride,” McNeil said. “Not that we hit the faster pitchers, but we hit them better.”
Trailing 1-0, Crestwood took the lead in the third with two runs scored with two outs. Murphy singled and scored on Jordan Olenginski’s triple. Olenginski scored when Sydney Sobolewski followed with a single.
Sobolewski’s hit would be the last for Crestwood until Kulp’s double to start the seventh. The Comets also left a runner on third in the sixth.
“We couldn’t get (a hit) there,” Crestwood coach Bob Bertoni said. “In the top the the sixth, we couldn’t get one. In the top of the seventh, we couldn’t get one. Those things come back to haunt you.
“Our two freshmen pitchers, Haley and Katie (Thomas), I couldn’t be prouder of them. They’re not going to strike anyone out. I don’t think Haley had a strikeout today. But she hits her spots, she moves the ball around. Haley is a tough kid and proved it today.”
NOTES: The game started at 3 p.m. because Crestwood had its National Honor Society Induction ceremony Monday night. … In an oddity, Wyoming Area lead-off hitter Bree Bednarski batted first in the first, third, fifth and seventh innings. Six-hole hitter Heather Nametko led off the second, fourth and sixth innings. … Wyoming Area lost it two regular-season games with Tunkhannock, 2-0 on April 6 and 5-3 on May 11.
Wyoming Area 3, Crestwood 2
E — Crestwood 2. LOB — Crestwood 3, Wyoming Area 7. 2B — Sobolewski, Remley. 3B — Oleginski. SB — Bednarski. CS — Bednarski.
Reach John Erzar at 570-991-6394 or on Twitter @TLJohnErzar