A tight sectional softball playoff game in Illinois was overshadowed by a pair of plays that unfolded in the outfield, with each team stealing a potentially critical home run from its opponent.
During Belleville East’s (Ill.) 9-6, come-from-behind Class 4A Normal West sectional quarterfinal victory against Sacred Heart Griffin, Belleville East center fielder Amanda Dermody first stole a would-be home run by tracking a deep ball all the way to the fence, then holding on as she crashed into the plastic retaining wall.
Yet Dermody was outdone by counterpart Renee Abernathy, an expected Kentucky signee, who not only went to the wall, but literally stepped one foot over it to ensure she held on to the ball for a Sacred Heart.
Together, the grabs make for one of the most impressive pairs of highlight plays you’re likely to find in any sport. Both stars deserve plenty of credit for their athleticism and clutch plays. It’s just a shame that only Dermody will move on and have another chance to match her earlier heroics.