CUMBERLAND — Having already visited Western Maryland and claiming the title of prestigious Alhambra Catholic Invitational Basketball Tournament less than a month ago, Bishop O’Connell brings another national-powerhouse to the Cumberland area when it plays in the F Club Softball Classic today at Long Field.
The Knights bring with them the No. 3 ranking in the country according to MaxPreps Xcellent 25 poll and are No. 2 in the Washington Post poll. O’Connell travels to join host Fort Hill, Southern and Somerset for a full day of action. The four teams will play four games beginning at 10 o’clock this morning and continuing through until the last game begins at 4 p.m. A junior varsity tournament will be taking place at the same times at Flynn Field. Northern replaces Bishop O’Connell due to its lack of a jayvee team.
Since losing to Northern of Calvert County, 2-1, on April 13 of last year, the Knights have allowed only one run in its last 22 games, and have outscored opponents 69-1 in six games this season. They have won 17 of the last 19 Virginia Independent School State titles.
Senior Tori Finucane, a preseason MaxPreps All-American pitcher, is hitting .684 in 19 at bats with 16 runs batted in and three home runs. In 35 innings on the mound, she has allowed one earned run and seven hits, and has thrown a complete game each time out. Against 126 batters she’s faced, 79 have finished in strikeouts and nine in walks.
Jillian Ferraro, a second-team All-American, is hitting .450 with three home runs and 16 runs batted in.
Finucane has committed to play at Missouri, while Ferraro will play at North Carolina.
The Southern Rams enter the weekend with a 2-1 record after beating Hampshire and Keyser before losing their first game to Fort Hill on Monday.
The Sentinels are 5-1 on the season and 4-0 in the Appalachian Mountain Athletic Conference. Besides Southern, the Sentinels have beaten Frankfort twice and Allegany once. They
split a doubleheader with Hedgesville to account for their lone loss.
Somerset has had only one chance to take the field so far against Bedford on Thursday. Results of the game were unavailable.
The Eagles and Sentinels begin the day by squaring off at 10 a.m. Southern and Bishop O’Connell play afterwards at noon, followed by Southern vs. Somerset at 2 p.m. and Fort Hill vs. O’Connell at 4 p.m.
Chris is a sportswriter for the Cumberland Times-News. Contact him at email@example.com.