By KEVIN ROBERTS
Southington softball started the past week with a trio of wins over Simsbury, Fitch and Avon, but ended it with a tough loss at undefeated South Windsor. The Lady Knights are 11-3 with six games left in the regular season, and all of them must be completed by May 23.
With all of the rain that has fallen this spring, it will be a rushed finish to the regular season for Southington.
The Knights beat Simsbury 16-1 in six innings on May 6 in Simsbury. Southington defeated Fitch 12-3 at home on May 7, then took down Avon at home, 17-1 in five innings on May 9. The Knights lost 5-0 at South Windsor on May 10. Here’s what happened in each game:
Easy Simsbury win
MAY 6—Chrissy Marotto, Jazmin Lasane, Diane Williams and Kasey Mason each had two hits in the Knight win over the Trojans.
Marotto was 2-for-3 with a stolen base and two runs scored, Lasane went 2-for-2 with a double, run scored and two RBI, Williams was 2-for-3 with two RBI, and Mason went 2-for-3 with a double, three runs scored, a stolen base, and an RBI. Nicole Greco and Alex Rogers (double) each drove in two runs, and Abby Lamson walked and scored twice. Julia Theriault pitched the first three innings (one unearned run, four hits, four strikeouts, one walk) to pick up the win. Julia Panarella and Kelsey Fernandez each turned in a scoreless inning in the circle.
Early scare against Fitch
MAY 7—The Knights lost Panarella three batters into the game when a Falcon batter drilled a line drive off of her knee. Panarella was OK, but was replaced in the circle by Theriault.
Theriault inherited a second and third situation with one out, but got out of it.
“I don’t let it bother me. I’m just going to go in there and do what I’ve got to do,” Theriault said. “Sometimes I motivate myself, I just say they’re not crossing home plate, I’m not letting that happen.”
Theriault pitched 4 2/3 innings of relief for the win. She gave up three runs (one earned) on four hits, struck out four and walked two. Dominique Gaudio and Fernandez each pitched a scoreless inning after Theriault.
On offense, Marotto blasted a home run over the left field wall to lead off the bottom of the first inning.
“She’s just a beast. I literally was getting ready because I was on double (deck), and that’s just Chrissy. She’s so quiet,” said Lamson, who had two triples.
“Silent assassin,” said coach Davina Hernandez with a laugh.
Hernandez added: “She didn’t even know she hit it. She thought it was a double.”
Southington jumped out to a 4-0 lead, then extended it to 9-1 after four innings. Marotto finished the game 3-for-3 with the home run, a double, four runs scored and two RBI. Lamson had two runs scored and two RBI, and Katelyn Lipsky added a single and two RBI.
“We’ve been working a lot on getting the ball where we want to hit it and hitting it as hard as we can,” Lamson said. “We work on hitting most of the time, especially with all the rain, because we can’t get away from the rain. Most of those days we’re inside, we’re working on hitting. I think it’s just coming together, we’re really piecing hits together more.”
Adjustments lead to rout
MAY 9—After struggling early against the Falcons, the Knights made the adjustments Hernandez wanted them to make at the plate.
“I thought we did a lot of great things. We did some fantastic baserunning today,” Hernandez said. “We’ve been working really hard on taking the extra base when people are falling asleep, and we did a really good job with that today.”
Greco had two stolen bases while Fernandez, Rogers and Katie Gundersen each had a stolen base. At the plate, Marotto had two triples, a walk, two runs scored and two RBI. Lipsky tallied a bases-clearing triple, one of six three-baggers hit by the Knights. Williams was 3-for-3 with a single, double, triple and four RBI while Fernandez added a single, two runs scored and two RBI.
Theriault started, pitched the first two innings (no runs, no hits, two strikeouts) and took the win. Panarella returned to the circle and gave up a single unearned run in her two innings. Fernandez pitched the fifth inning.
South Windsor loss
MAY 10—A five-run second inning and the pitching of Bobcat senior Maria Hanchuk did in the Knights on the road.
South Windsor stormed to a 5-0 lead in the second inning and knocked the starter Theriault out of the game. Hanchuk handcuffed the Southington offense, yielding only a single to Fernandez and a double to Gabby Malachowski. Hanchuk struck out 14, walked three and hit three batters on 114 pitches in her complete-game effort.
Up next: Southington was scheduled to host Newington on Tuesday and Hall on Thursday. After a road game at Windsor on Friday night, the Knights play Conard on Saturday morning at 10:30. The Conard game was originally scheduled for Monday but was postponed because of rain.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com