Leading off today:
The Susquehanna Valley
softball team advanced to the Southern Tier Athletic Conference championship game in unconventional fashion with a 4-3 win over Maine-Endwell on Tuesday.
The Sabres were held hitless through five innings and broke a 3-3 tie in the sixth inning via a wild pitch. And, no, that wasn't the weird part.
Susquehanna Valley scored three first-inning runs when its first six batters reached base on five walks and a hit batsman. Adding to the novelty of the situation, all of that damage came against M-E pitcher Emily Hess, who was the New York State Sportswriters Association Class A player of the year as a junior last spring.
Winning pitcher Sophia Pappas surrendered hits to three of M-E’s first five batters but just three more the rest of the way and struck out 12.
Susquehanna Valley was playing a day after absorbing its first loss of the season, 4-1 to Corning in the James "Ace" Mirabito Tournament final. Pappas did not pitch that one after hurling three shutouts in the previous 24 hours.
Section 1 slugger: Meghan Giordano's career at Croton-Harmon is winding down, and the sixth-year varsity softball player has compiled some staggering numbers, beginning with her .821 batting average as a sophomore.
She's at 55 career home runs and counting for another NYSPHSAA record.
"I don't really pay attention to numbers," said the 5-foot-4 Hofstra recruit, who was caught off-guard by her 2016 batting average. "It was just like, '.821, oh wow, that's a big number.'"
Giordano has been walked intentionally more than 40 times in her career, including instances when the bases were loaded.
"At first it was very annoying because all I wanted to do was just move the runners," she said. "Now, I understand (opposing teams) have to do their job. I get it, it's a sign of respect."
Hockey rules change: The National Federation of State High School Associations is cracking down on a desperation ploy in ice hockey.
Meeting in Indianapolis last month, the hockey committee revised the rule governing players who deliberately dislodge the net. To align with the rule regarding deliberately displacing a helmet, a penalty shot will be awarded when a player deliberately displaces the cage during a breakaway with less than two minutes remaining in regulation or any time during overtime. If this violation occurs on an obvious and imminent goal, a goal is awarded the opposing team.
Does this sound familiar? There's nothing in the hopper at the moment that would lead to a change, but public-school coaches in at least two Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League districts are tired of losing to private schools and would support holding separate tournaments.