A week into April, the Fayetteville-Manlius softball team got away from the practices and scrimmages -- and made an instant impression.
The Hornets went to Rome Free Academy last Wednesday afternoon and, with its hitting in high gear, knocked off the Black Knights 9-3.
F-M, beaten by Cicero-North Syracuse in the 2009 Section III Class AA quarterfinals, got right to work with four runs in the first inning, then tacked on three more runs in the top of the second to make it 7-0.
Single tallies in the fourth and sixth innings would follow, as Elizabeth Luenderman doubled and earned three RBIs to lead a 15-hit attack. Stephane Brunet drove in two runs and Nora Gallagher also had an RBI.
Meanwhile, Amy Bright, who tripled, went all seven innings in the pitcher's circle, giving up just five hits and getting error-free defense behind her. RFA had four errors.
As this went on, Jamesville-DeWitt, 2-0 going into its game with Mexico, took its first loss of the season in a 5-2, 10-inning decision.
Twice, the Red Rams saw one-run margins get away, and the Tigers got three runs in the top of the 10th to pull out in front for good. Meghan Engstrom, pitching in relief of Jenn Keeler, took the loss.