Kramer’s 19 good for Georgia upset

WKU junior Brook Holloway dodges the tag to score a run against USM. This was the third of six runs scored by the lady Hilltoppers during the second game of the double header played on April 11. The game ended with the lady Eagles being shut out 6-0. SPECIAL TO HERALD/ Andrew Livesay

WKU Herald Sports

Miranda Kramer had to have been pushing her limits when she pitched 14 innings in the Lady Toppers upset over 14 seeded Georgia on Saturday afternoon.

In true Miranda Kramer fashion, the senior was on her way to a no hitter until a rocky fourth inning saw the Bulldogs notch back to back doubles and a single to bring the score to 1-0.

Kramer was able to play damage control in the fourth inning as well as keep WKU (36-12) in a game where they couldn’t seem to get the offensive ball rolling. They left runners stranded multiple times in just regulation time alone.

As it seemed as Georgia’s lone run in the fourth would be enough to force the Lady Tops into a playoff game for the right to play in the regional final, junior shortstop Brooke Holloway forced extra innings by slamming a solo home run.

Slowly but surely, one extra inning became two, which became three and so on until the contest had reached 14 innings, exactly double the amount included in regulation time.

In the longest game in program history, Kramer threw a staggering 192 pitches and raked in 19 strikeouts—tying her career high.

Along with the lone run, the Kramer allowed just six walks and five hits in four hours of play.  The Bulldogs would come ever closer in the extra innings, but left runners stranded in the 11th, 12th, and 13th.

While it was Holloway who forced extra innings with a seventh-inning home run, it was the combination of play between Carleigh Chaumont and Preslie Cruce literally hours later in the 14th that would push WKU through to victory. Chaumont hit Cruce home.  

WKU advances to the championship game held Sunday morning at 11, and will clash with the winner of North Carolina and Georgia (who are playing for a spot in the regional final).

Since the Lady Toppers have defeated both of these squads already, and because the region holds a double-elimination standard—the Lady Tops will need to be defeated in two games in the final if their opponent wants to advance, while WKU needs just one more win to move on. They opened the regional with a 2-1 win over North Carolina on Friday.

First pitch is set for Sunday morning at 11.