By Rob Potter
MONGAUP VALLEY August 17, 2001 The Combined Energy Services softball team pounded out 13 hits Tuesday night enroute to a 9-3 victory over Frankies Sports Bar in the first round of the Sullivan County Womens Softball League playoffs at Collins Park.
The victory, combined with CES 5-4 win over Frankies the previous night in the best-of-three series, guaranteed CES a spot in next weeks A Division playoff finals. CES will face undefeated regular season champion Charlies Angels in the best-of-three championship series beginning Monday night at Collins Park.
CES had to overcome an early deficit in Tuesdays contest, however. Frankies scored three runs in the top of the first off CES hurler Christine Cully.
RBI singles by Rhonda Gorr and Shirley Felder along with a sacrifice fly by Marie Frunzi gave Frankies a 3-0 lead in the top of the first.
CES got on the board in the bottom of the frame when Barbara Ward-Blank ripped a triple to left and then scampered home when the ball was momentarily bobbled in the outfield.
CES took the lead for good in the bottom of the second. With one out, Chrissy Ort reached base on an error. The next batter, Valerie Feinberg, ripped a pitch from Frankies pitcher Natalie Cillis to right center. The ball fell between the outfielders and rolled to the fence, allowing Ort to score easily and Feinberg to run all the way around the bases for an inside-the-park home run.
Feinbergs round-tripper knotted the score at 3-3 and CES took the lead three batters later. A single to left field by Anna Puleo allowed Cully to score from third base and make it a 4-3 contest.
CES added three runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth to seal the win. In the fifth, Alexa Mickelson smashed an RBI triple and Jill Hubert-Simon and Ward-Blank each added RBI singles. In the sixth, Aubrea Sullivan scored on an infield error and Mickelson hit a sac fly to bring Puleo home with the final run of the night.
We just hit the ball very well tonight, CES manager Walter Saunders said. Even the ground balls were hit hard.
Saunders also noted that his team did not commit a single error in the contest.
The way we are playing now, I think we can go all the way, Saunders said. The key to this team is that all of these ladies play together as one.
While Saunders and his team were happy that they were guaranteed at least a second-place finish in the playoffs, the collective mood of the Frankies squad was understandably different.
They just played better than we did, said Frankies player/manager Val Fersch, whose team captured the 2000 championship playoffs title. They hit the ball tonight and we didnt. Actually, they hit better than we did in both games.
Angels, Roarks Advance
Charlies Angels earned its spot in the A Division championship series by sweeping the Nugget in their best-of-three first round series. Charlies Angels recorded a 14-7 win Monday night and a 5-1 victory Tuesday night.
Leanne Mangabang paced the Charlies Angels offense Monday night by smacking two home runs and knocking in five RBI. In addition, Debbi Ackerley and Tonya Ackerley each had three hits on the night.
Charlies Angels scored four times in the first inning of Tuesdays game. Mangabang ripped a two-run double in the frame and Debbi Ackerley hit a sac-fly to bring Tonya Ackerley home from third base.
In the B division playoffs, Roark's Tavern advanced to the championship round by taking two straight games from Carmichaels.
The Roark's offense exploded for 20 runs in a 20-3 win Monday night. Leading the offensive attack were Amy Bruderman (4-for-4), Toni Catino (4/5, home run, two RBI), Theresa Nietzel (3/5, home run, triple, seven RBI), Brenda Avery (3/4, two doubles, home run, two RBI) and Liz Apmann (2/4, home run, 2 RBI).
On Tuesday night, Roark's recorded an 8-6 victory over Carmichaels. Catino was 3-for-4 with a home run, while Tracey Gaugham was 3-for-4 and Shannon Holland went 2-for-4 on the night.
Roark's will play the winner of the first round series between Mr. Willys and C & C Plumbing in the B Division Championship series. That series begins Monday night.