May 16, 2014 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Though the path to those wins proved different, the Cicero-North Syracuse and Liverpool softball teams both earned crucial decisions with the Section III Class AA playoffs close at hand.
The Northstars nearly found itself on the wrong end of a regular-season sweep from Baldwinsville last Monday afternoon, but rallied in the seventh inning to edge the Bees 4-3.
The two sides exchanged runs in the third inning and C-NS scored a run in the fourth to go in front 2-1. It stayed that way until the sixth, when B’ville got to Megan Tully for two runs to claim the lead. Isabella May scored two of the Bees’ runs, with Serena Capsello scoring the other.
Meanwhile, Keeanna Wolcik, the same pitcher who tamed the Northstars 2-1 on April 3 at Gillette Field, was on the brink of doing the same here, carrying that one-run lead into the top of the seventh, but seeing C-NS poke across the tying and go-ahead runs.
All told, Wolcik gave up six hits and struck out two, but Tully, who managed to get the final three outs to prevent any B’ville comeback, managed 11 strikeouts. Khaliyah Flournory tripled and singled, while Morgan Phililps managed two hits. Flournory, Lauren Floyd, Rachelle Walters and Jess Callisto scored the Northstars’ runs.
In contrast to C-NS’s tense drama with B’ville, Liverpool had a far easier time of it in last Monday afternoon’s 10-0 shutout over Syracuse East.
As Dana Nicoletti was throwing a complete-game three-hitter with 12 strikeouts, the Warriors banged out 16 hits and scored in each of the first five innings.
Ericka Sadowski had a team-high four hits, while Nicoletti went three-for-three and walked, too. Peyton Bellrose’s pair of doubles led to two RBIs as Dominique LaRose and Jenna Wike added one RBI apiece. Sadowski scored a pair of runs.
But then the Warriors went through its own nail-biter a day later, having to work all the way to the end to turn back visiting West Genesee in a 2-1 thriller.
This was the same Wildcats team Liverpool had to hang on to beat 6-4 on April 28 after nearly squandering a 6-0 lead in the bottom of the seventh inning. But with Bellrose and WG counterpart Morgan Nichols in the pitcher’s circle, neither side would get close to that run total here.
In the top of the third inning, the Wildcats took a 1-0 lead as Allie Nave singled home Jackie Liberty, only to have the Warriors tie it, 1-1, in the bottom of the third.
From there, Bellrose and Nichols kept it even, neither side blinking, until Liverpool poked across the go-ahead run in the bottom of the sixth and Bellrose was able to get the final outs.
All told, WG got just five hits off Bellrose, who earned 10 strikeouts and also drove in one of Liverpool’s runs. Nichols limited Liverpool to eight hits. It was Bellrose and Cerrone earning the RBIs for the Warriors, Cerrone the only player on her side to earn two hits.
And now the Warriors had to turn around and also face Baldwinsville on Wednesday, but after a rough start and a pitching change, Liverpool took over – and took out the Bees 10-4.
In the top of the first inning, B’ville jumped on Nicoletti for four runs, two of them driven home on Kyra Hunsinger’s single as Elizabeth Johns doubled home a run.
But then Bellrose replaced Nicoletti and, over the course of the remaining 6 1/3 innings, kept the Bees silent, only allowing one hit and striking out six.
Meanwhile, B’ville pitcher Emma Bernet, in her first start since her perfect game against Syracuse East on May 9, was hit hard in the bottom of the first as Liverpool answered B’ville’s scoring outburst with one of its own, netting five runs.
And as Bellrose shut the door, the Warriors tacked on runs in four of the next five innings, too, against Bernet and Sara Napolitano, racking up 13 hits, two of them by Bellrose, who managed three RBIs as Katie Yudin added two hits and two RBIs. Nicoletti, Taylor Charles and McKenzie Harris earned one RBI apiece.
In Wednesday night’s game at the Onondaga Community College complex, C-NS got past Fayetteville-Manlius 6-2, but it wasn’t that easy.
Trailing 2-0, F-M plated a run in the bottom of the first. Another exchange of runs followed, the Hornet pulling within 3-2 in the fourth and keeping it tight before the Northstars used two runs in the fifth and another run in the sixth to get clear.
Flournory and Phillips both had three hits, with Floyd joining Phillips as they both scored twice. Kennedy added a pair of hits as Tully and Neuser split the pitching duties, Tully not allowing a hit in her four-inning stint that included eight strikeouts.