Tri-State Thunder Win Seven Straight
After losing their first competition on Saturday by one run, the Tri-State Thunder 18U travel softball team won seven straight games, including four in elimination play, to become tournament champions at the Memorial Day Shootout in Shippensburg on Memorial Day weekend. The Thunder team consists of some of the top players in the four-state area, including Samanthia McQuade from McConnellsburg. Although Mc- Quade took a shot to the face in game 3 on Saturday, a trip to hospital and six stitches later she returned to play in the Thunder's fourth game. Finishing game 3 without one of their top hitters in McQuade, the Thunder went on to defeat the PA Blitz, and Samanthia's high school teammate, Megan Eichelberger, 4-3. Kelsey White contributed to the team on 1st base and at the plate over the weekend.
The Thunder went 3-1 on Saturday. Samanthia McQuade hit .555 with two doubles. On Sunday the Thunder won four straight games in elimination play to win the title. Samanthia McQuade, Destiny James and Casey Ferrell each added a homerun on Sunday.
On Saturday the Thunder lost game one 3-2 to Fire-n-Ice. In game two on Saturday, the Thunder defeated the Cumberland County Magic 16-0. Game three saw the Thunder fall behind to the PA Blitz 1-0 in the first inning. A sixth inning rally capped by a grandslam by Bethany Garnand allowed the team to pull out the win 4-1. Kelsey White (Southern Fulton) added a single to load the bases before Garnand's grand slam finished the game. The Thunder then faced a strong York Shockwaves in the fourth game of the day. Samanthia McQuade (Mc- Connellsburg) went 3-4 in the game.
The Thunder came back on Sunday seeded second and faced Cumberland County Magic for a second time. The Thunder defeated the PA Alley Cats 8-2 in the second game on Sunday. Game 4 saw the Thunder up against the top seed and the team that defeated them on Saturday, Fire-n-Ice. This time the Thunder dominated the game winning 6-2. Samanthia Mc- Quade (McConnellsburg) added her 1st homerun of the year for the Thunder. Immediately advancing to the championship game, the Thunder had a twogame break while waiting to meet Fire-n-Ice for a third time. Fire-n-Ice took the early lead after their leadoff hitting hit, an infield single, and scored on a error. The Thunder answered with three runs in the second inning. Fire-n-Ice scored two more runs, one in the fifth and one in the sixth to tie the game. With time expired in the bottom of the sixth inning, Bethany Garnand (Smithsburg) led off with a single. Casey Ferrell (Millbrook) came to the plate and after getting behind 0-2 in the count, hit a walk off homerun to deep left field to capture the championship for the Thunder.