LAMAR, Colo. -- Just when it appeared Levittown was headed for another extra-inning affair, the Slammers got the clutch hit they needed most.
With two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, Meghan Acton hit a line drive to leftfield that drove in Toniann Pasquaralle from second and gave the Slammers a 2-1 walk-off win over the Wausau (Wis.) All-Stars at the Babe Ruth 16-Under Softball World Series Wednesday night. Pasquaralle had reached base on a bunt single and stole second to move into scoring position.
"I wanted to win so bad," said Acton, who was 2-for-4 with a run. "I just felt it when I got up [to bat], and I just smashed it. It's just my weekend I guess. It feels amazing. We've got a shot to win this."
The win put Levittown (5-1, 2-0 bracket play) into Thursday's semifinal against the Wilson County (N.C.) Xtreme at 5 p.m., the only team to beat the Slammers at this year's Series. Wausau fell to 4-1 and will play Lodi, Calif., in an elimination game.
"I'm ecstatic, and I can't ask for anything more than that," Slammers coach Mike Gordek said. "Every game, we have new heroes, and tonight it was Toniann Pasquaralle with the bunt and Meghan Acton with the base hit. Alannah pitched a phenomenal game for us. It was our game -- small ball at its best."
The throw from Wausau leftfielder Nikki Volm went to second base, and Acton was declared safe in a close play. Even if she had been called out, Pasquaralle had already scored the winner.
Levittown pitcher Alannah Basile (2-1) was dialed in once again, tossing a one-hitter and striking out 12. Wausau pitcher Brianna Jankowski also pitched a strong game, scattering six hits and striking out eight.
Wausau got on the scoreboard first in the top of the fourth after Samantha Basile committed a two-base error in leftfield on a ball hit by Kimberly Steif. Jankowski helped herself by singling in Steif from third with one out as the All-Stars took a 1-0 lead.
The Slammers tied it quickly when Acton led off the inning with a triple and scored on a Sabrina Gordek fielder's choice. Levittown loaded the bases with no outs, but could not push any more runs across the plate.
In the fifth, Levittown had runners on first and second with no outs, but once again stranded the runners, much to the dismay of coach Gordek. "I told my girls, 'You can't have bases loaded and no outs and let that get away, and we've just got to hope it doesn't come back to haunt us.' "
Wausau got a runner on base in the sixth and seventh innings, but Basile pitched her way out of the potential jams. Pasquaralle stepped to the plate with two outs and the game seemingly headed to extra innings, but laid down a textbook bunt down the third-base line.
"Bring on North Carolina," Gordek said. "There's a little animosity going on. We're rolling, and we're ready."