Panther defense flawless in 4-1 win over Mahar
It was night and day for the Pioneer Valley Regional School defense on Thursday.
One day after committing nine errors in a shutout loss to Turners Falls, the Panthers made 20 putouts without committing a miscue and it helped Pioneer to a 4-1 win over Mahar Regional School in a Franklin County League softball game in Northfield.
Panther pitcher Erin Bertrand struck out one and allowed just five hits and one walk in seven innings. She was helped out by a defense that played flawlessly and made a number of strong plays, according to coach Joel Cole.
“We got done with yesterday’s game and I said, ‘Flush this game ,’” he said. “Today they came to play. There were a lot of ground balls and the girls really stepped up, fielded them and made the throws.”
Pioneer (3-2) gave Bertrand plenty of run support with a three-run second inning. Mary Luckham (two hits) led off with a triple and scored when Kelly Sweeney (two hits) hit an RBI single. Jessica Scoville (two hits) reached on a bunt hit, and Taylor Flaherty (two hits) drove in both runners with a two-run single.
Pioneer tacked on a fourth run in the fifth inning on a Cheyenne Hubert RBI single. Logan Anderson finished with three hits for Pioneer.
Mahar (3-2) made things interesting in the seventh inning by loading the bases. Emily Melanson broke up the shutout bid with an RBI single, but Bertrand got out of the jam.
Kate Donelan struck out four and allowed 12 hits and no walks in six innings in the loss.
Frontier 12, Hopkins 5 — Frontier Regional School registered 17 hits on Thursday afternoon and beat Hopkins Academy, 12-5, in a FCL softball game in Hadley.
While the offense was solid for the Red Hawks, the defense was less than desirable — they committed five errors, which helped Hopkins score its five runs.
The offense helped overcome the defensive shortcomings, however, as five players had multiple hits in the win. Caitlin Sullivan finished with three hits, including a double, and one RBI, while Hannah Adams singled, doubled and drove in two runs. Cassidy Ciesluk finished with two hits and one RBI, and Courtney Newsome and Ally Hamelin each finished with two hits. Mae Fydenkevez singled and drove in two runs, Sarah Toomey doubled and drove in one run, and Sarah Meunier singled and drove in a run.
Hamelin earned the win, striking out seven while allowing four hits and four walks.
Payton Ring suffered the loss.
Athol 16, Greenfield 3 (5) — Athol High School took just five innings to dispatch of Greenfield High School, 16-3, in FCL softball action Thursday in Athol.
Julia Salmond had a monster day for the Red Raiders, collecting three hits, including a double and a mammoth home run, totaling five RBI in the process. Liz Arpide had a big day as well, smashing two doubles and knocking in two runs of her own.
“Julia and Liz had huge days for us,” commented Athol head coach Colleen Bannister. “Liz was kind of the catalyst that got Julia going. Lexi Hamlett was a huge factor as well, it seems like she produces something good every time she’s up there.”
Hamlett had two hits and drove in three, and Molly Cleveland recorded her first hit of the year, along with an RBI.
Jess Soucie pitched for Athol and went five innings, allowing just two hits, and striking out five.
Leah Wallner and Mackenzie Plasse had the hits for the Green Wave. Greenfield catcher Rachel Pelc played a defensive gem, letting nothing get by, saving her team several runs.
The Red Raiders travel to South Deerfield to take on Frontier Regional School today at 4 p.m.
Turners 16, Mohawk 4 (6) — Turners Falls High School took advantage of seven walks in the first inning, as it scored 10 runs in the frame and rolloed to a 16-4 and handily beat Mohawk Trail Regional High School, 16-4, Thursday afternoon in Turners Falls.
Mackenzie Phillips had a big day for the Indians (2-0). She pitched four no-hit innings with eight strikeouts and no walks, and she also doubled and knocked in two runs. Emma Johnson also doubled and had three RBI, while Morgan Ozdarski added two hits and an RBI for Turners.
Mohawk (0-3) scored all of its runs in the fifth, with Hope Lively picking up the lone RBI on the day for the Warriors.
Mohawk returns to the diamond today at 3:30 p.m., hosting Smith Vocational & Agricultural High School. Turners plays next on Monday at Hampshire Regional High School at 4.
• Turners also won the junior varsity contest, 5-1, despite 16 strikeouts for Mohawk starting pitcher Lydia Donahue.
Pathfinder 12, FC Tech 0, (41/ 2) — Franklin County Technical School ran into a buzz saw Thursday afternoon as it dropped a 12-0 verdict to Pathfinder Vocational High School Thursday afternoon in Three Rivers.
That buzz saw was Pathfinder’s Jenna Maska, who through four games on the young season has struck out 57 batters, and hasn’t given up more that one hit in any individual contest.
On Thursday, Maska fanned 11 and issued only two walks in her five innings of work (the game was called after 41/2 innings due to the mercy rule).
Maska was also the driving offensive force for the Pioneers (3-2), as she doubled and homered in the first inning, driving in five runs.
“She’s a heck of a player,” said Tech head coach Mike Blanchard. “She’s thrown 3 one-hitters and a no-hitter this year, she certainly didn’t take us by surprise.”
Sam Scopa had the lone hit for the Eagles (1-3).
Tech will get right back at it Friday afternoon, as it hosts Greenfield High School at 3:30 p.m.