JOHNSTOWN — Stevie Wadsworth has a right elbow that’s sort of like an unwanted neighbor — it pops in, pops out, whenever.
Technically, Wadsworth’s elbow on her throwing arm is dislocated.
Figuratively, when it’s out of socket, all Wadsworth has to do is give her arm a good, hard shake.
The Roosevelt junior shook off the pain, and even an inside-the-park home run by Windsor’s Shaela Heath to help the Rough Riders to an 11-9 Class 4A Tri-Valley Conference victory Tuesday afternoon at Nelson Farm Park.
The victory improves the Rough Riders to 3-3 in conference play, 7-4 overall. Windsor slips to 1-5, 3-7-1.
A congenial Wadsworth explained her dilemma after the two teams traded the lead several times through the first five innings with the Rough Riders taking an 8-6 lead in the bottom of the fifth with four runs — RBI singles by Madison Kilcrease and Wadsworth, a sacrifice fly by Megan Flynn and an RBI double by Morgan Devine — figuring it might be enough to finally hold off a pesky Windsor squad that has improved immensely in the last three weeks.
That’s when Heath took Wadsworth deep to right field, launching an outside fastball over the head of Roosevelt right fielder Christa Tate and taking coach Sandi Cumings’ signal to head home at full speed.
The two-run home run tied the game back up at 8-8.
“The pitch was outside and I was just able to drive it to right, which is what I expected,” Heath said. “It tied it, and we knew we would need more runs, but at that point, we had confidence we could score again.”
Cumings had hoped that Heath’s homer would turn the momentum to Windsor’s side.
“The momentum had switched, but we weren’t able to carry it over into the field,” Cumings said. “We’re playing together a lot better though.”
The Rough Riders took advantage of two Windsor errors in the bottom of the sixth — the most costly being a throwing error by Windsor catcher Delaney Hays — to go back ahead 10-8, then added an insurance run when Devine lined an RBI single, giving the Rough Riders an 11-8 lead.
Windsor returned the favor by scoring in the top of the seventh via a dropped fly ball by the Rough Riders before Wadsworth whiffed Kendall Johnson to end the game.
“I think when we went ahead for the last time, we picked things up and had fun,” said Wadsworth, who was tagged for 10 hits, but just four earned runs. “It’s a good thing I had good defense behind me today.”
Kilcrease, Beck Eidson and Devine combined for six RBI for the Rough Riders, who exhibited solid resilience all day.
“We were a little rough early in the game, but we regrouped,” Roosevelt coach Alan Gibson said.
When the Rough Riders gathered in the dugout after Heath’s inside-the-park home run, Gibson summed it up by telling his squad, “Hey, it’s just a tie game.”
Wadsworth may have been the least fazed by the big hit, anxious to get back on the mound with the three-run lead headed to the seventh.
“She’s tough,” Gibson offered when confirming Wadsworth’s elbow injury.