Memorial Day weekend proved far more relaxing for the Jamesville-DeWitt and East Syracuse-Minoa softball teams after both of them knew they would still be playing once the weekend was over.
With the no. 3 seed in the Section III Class A playoffs, the Red Rams nearly got upended in Thursday’s Class A quarterfinal by no. 6 seed New Hartford, but saved things just in time to eliminate that other group of Spartans 8-4.
Staked to a 2-0 lead in the second inning, J-D pitcher Kerri Keeler could not hold it. New Hartford tied it in the third and moved ahead, 4-2, in the top of the fourth as Erin Donovan led the visitors with a double and two RBIs.
Try as it could, the Rams could not get to New Hartford pitcher Mikelle Deck, and it was still 4-2 going to the bottom of the sixth. Here, though, J-D batted around and exploited all of the Spartans’ mistakes for six runs to zoom out in front.
Combined, Maddy Devereaux and Lateja Bryant got rewarded for their patience with five total walks that led to three runs scored. Maggie Austin had two hits and an RBI, while Rachel Honis and Tessa Devereaux also drove in runs. Keeler overcame six hits and four walks to strike out seven.
Across town, ESM, the no. 4 seed, had no trouble at all in its Class A quarterfinal, roaring past no. 7 seed Indian River in a 10-2 romp.
All of the damage came early, as the Spartans scored twice in the first inning and unloaded on the Warriors in the bottom of the second with its own six-run outburst.
Jaime Gallardo, with three hits and three RBIs, led the attack, while Danielle Hobb had two hits, two runs scored and two RBIs. Haley Wodarczyk and Julie Maselli each doubled and drove in a run. Danielle Ventrone, who scored twice, pitched a complete game, striking out seven.