Kaleigh DeBeck’s one-out single in the bottom of the ninth inning brought home Molly Marsh from second base and lifted West Noble past Lakeland, 1-0 in a thrilling NECC softball tilt played Tuesday evening in Ligonier.
The Lady Lakers stranded 10 runners on base in the loss, their second in league play against four wins. In the third inning, Lakeland loaded the bases with one out only to see its next two hitters strikeout and pop up.
In the eighth inning, Ashlynn Grubb and Lexie Myers reached base to start the frame, but did not advance any further, as West Noble hurler Kelsie Peterson retired the next three Lady Laker batters.
Peterson gave up just three hits, walked six and struckout 14 in picking up the win. Losing twirler Grubb scattered six safeties, fanned 15 and did not walk a batter.
Lakeland stands 10-7 overall.
Former Westview standout Adam Whitmer, now a senior at Valparaiso University, recently was named the winner of the Herb Foster Sportsmanship Award given by the Horizon League at its annual post-season awards ceremony last Friday.
Whitmer played fourth singles for the Crusaders most of this past season, winning a total of 13 matches. He also teamed up for 12 doubles victories. For his career, Whitmer collected 40 singles and 42 doubles wins, ranking him in the top 10 in school history in both categories.
Whitmer is Valpo’s first Horizon League post-season award winner since joining the conference in 2007.