Last night, the Philipsburg Osceola Mounties beat the state champion Bald Eagle Eagles. They did it for Emily. It was exciting and convincing, a 13-0 drubbing of their rival. Emily’s cousin, P-O junior Chelsea Rex hurled a gem too. Rex also showed some class with her comments on a controversial call that cost her the no-no. I’m not surprised.
Congratulations ladies. You made an entire town awfully proud.
And one little girl too.
“This is the win that probably felt the greatest so far in my career,” Rex said.
She also dedicated the win to her 5-year-old cousin, Emily Whitehead, who was diagnosed with leukemia.
“This is really for Chelsea and her cousin,” Kelsey Gonder said. “[Emily] made us a sign and everything. It was really cute.”
Rex, coming off of a 12-strikeout relief appearance against Mount Union, struck out six, walked two and retired 12 in a row until a leadoff Cortney Switzer walk in the fifth. The junior induced a ground ball out and a pop-up after the walk and needed to get Alexi Josefik to finish the no-hitter.
But Josefik was ruled safe on a bang-bang play at first base similar to the one that cost Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game Wednesday night.
“I think it’s kind of like that perfect game we saw last night on TV,” Coach Gonder said. “I’d like to have the instant replay on that one.”
“It could have gone either way,” Rex said. “I thought she was out personally, but it happens. I did [care] a little bit, but the win was more important to me.”
Rex recovered and induced pinch-hitter Carrie Barnyak into hitting a ground ball to third baseman Gonder for the final out.
Afterward, the Lady Mounties celebrated, posed for photos and held that elusive district trophy that had eluded them for two years. “It’s awesome,” Kelsey Gonder said. “The first time [in 2007] was with Mackenzie [Gonder], and now it’s me and my dad.”
The Mounties continue their path toward a state title next week. Emily continues her fight today.