Westhill, WG eliminated in softball semifinals

Instead of a second Section III Class B title in three years, the Westhill softball team found itself banished to the sidelines by a familiar league rival. And in Class AA, West Genesee also fell victim to a familiar nemesis.

For the no. 2 seed Warriors, the end came in Wednesday night's semifinal at the Gillette Road Complex in Cicero, where no. 3 seed Cazenovia blanked them 5-0.

As this was going on, WG, the no. 4 seed in Class AA, could not end the reign of top seed and defending champion Liverpool, taking a 3-1 loss to the Warriors at Hopkins Road Park.

At the start of the season, to suggest that Westhill could get upended by Cazenovia seemed laughable. Without a senior in its lineup, the Lakers lost a 12-4 decision to the Warriors on April 8.

What no one could have envisioned was that the Lakers would not lose another game in the OHSL Liberty division, winning the May 6 rematch with Westhill 4-1 and sharing the league title.

Now, in the third and most important encounter, veteran pitcher Toni Secreti could not contain Cazenovia's lineup - Taylor Malmsheimer in particular. In the top of the first inning, Malmsheimer bashed an RBI double, then scored on Emily Mastropaolo's double.

Not content with that 2-0 margin, Cazenovia waited until the fifth. Then, with two runners on, Malmsheimer bashed another double, bringing home Kara Stadler and Korena Fenton to make it 4-0. Stadler returned in the sixth and drove home Melanie Arehart with the game's last run.

Meanwhile, Westhill's potent hitters could do little against Laker pitcher Nicole Chiarello, who allowed just three hits and walked no one while striking out eight. Secreti finished with seven strikeouts, but allowed 12 hits, three of them to Malmsheimer.

As Westhill was falling, West Genesee was seeking its own trip to the Class AA final, and looking to avenge a 4-1 defeat to Liverpool a month ago where three runs in the sixth inning pushed the Warriors in front.

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