Riley Zimmer talks about her triple play that ended Unionville-Sebewaing's win. The Detroit News
East Lansing — Rylee Zimmer had never seen a triple play, and was never involved in one.
Until the seventh inning Saturday of the Division 4 state championship.
Zimmer pulled off a triple play to end a Kalamazoo Christian rally and give Unionville-Sebewaing an exciting 3-1 victory.
“I’m still shaking because we won a state championship,” said Zimmer, in disbelief minutes after the game ended.
Zimmer wasn’t the only one in shock.
Clare Dirksen and Nyla de Jong both singled to open the seventh inning for Kalamazoo Christian (31-9), in what had the appearance of a game-turning rally.
But the next hitter Sammy Gano, lined a pitch right up the middle that deflected off the glove of pitcher Brynn Polega.
“I just did what you’re supposed to do,” said Zimmer, who had three of her team’s six hits and scored a run. “It was instinct, honestly. I saw it off her arm and that’s what made me slow it down a little bit. I just did what I’m supposed to do.”
Zimmer caught the deflection for the first out, then tagged second base for the second out, Dirksen having drifted away from the base. Zimmer then threw to first base, completing the triple play.
“I didn’t even realize it was going to be a triple play,” Zimmer said. “I just threw the ball hoping she was out and she was.”
Zimmer, a senior, was thrilled to finally see Unionville-Sebewaing (31-9) earn a state championship after a variety of misses in other sports this season.
“It does make up for everything, especially for volleyball this year,” Zimmer said. “We were so close. Softball, I guess, we made it, so, it works.”