There are dominant state title game performances, and there are otherworldy individual performances. The game put in by Alayna Astuto falls under the latter.
As reported by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and a handful of other outlets across Pennsylvania, Astuto, the Canonsburg (Pa.) Canon-McMillan High ace, struck out 18 batters across 12 innings in a 4-3, extra-inning victory against Langhorne (Pa.) Neshaminy High. She took a no-hitter into the 10th inning, when the international tiebreaker rule, calling for each half inning to begin with a runner at second base, took effect.
“It just kept going on and on and on,” Astuto told the Tribune-Review.
The win, capped by a two-run homer in the top of the 12th and three final outs by Astuto, earned Canon-McMillan the school’s first ever Class AAAA state title and was the longest game in Pennsylvania Class AAAA history, not to mention the second longest in any classification. Astuto pitched all 12 innings for the Big Macs, striking out 18, half of the total outs she recorded.
Fittingly, Astuto was a huge part of Canon-McMillan’s most successful season ever leading up to the state final. The team finished with a 25-1 record, often riding Astuto’s overpowering arm.
For her final act, Astuto did the only thing she could to top her own regular season: She kept going until the job was done, mowing down batters in the process.
“I could have went a couple more [innings], definitely,” Astuto said with a laugh. “It would have been hard. Walking tomorrow might have been a little bit hard.”
It probably was hard to walk, but a lot happier with a medal around Astuto’s neck.