By Ted Waddell
ELDRED May 7, 2002 Last Friday wasnt really Friday the 13th.
But for the Eldred softball team, Friday the third was unlucky enough as the visiting Liberty Lady Indians defeated the Lady Yellowjackets by a 15-2 margin in a non-league game.
While it was a disappointing afternoon for Eldred (2-6), Liberty (6-4) celebrated its first win after four losses. That was a disappointing trend after starting off the season with five consecutive victories.
After three frames, Liberty was up 3-2, but started to pull away in the fourth as they racked up three runs to make it a 6-2 ballgame.
For the rest of the game, the Lady Indians had a walk in the park as their hitting was aided by a seemingly endless array of Eldred errors.
In the fifth, Liberty scored five runs to boost its lead to 11-2 and in the final frame added another four runs.
In the first inning, Christine Waryha led off for Liberty with a single. Kate DeMayo walked and Chelsea LaGattuta was called out of an attempted sacrifice bunt. Andrea TerBush walked to load the bases.
A Michelle Olson grounder was bobbled, which allowed Waryha to score. Lisa DeStefanos ground ball was misplayed and DeMayo and LaGattuta scooted home on the error to put the visitors up 3-0.
In the bottom of the first, Aimee Schneider walked and then promptly stole second and third. She scored on a passed ball to give Eldred its first run.
In the third, Eldred scored again. Jenny Haas reached first base when her infield pop fly wasnt caught. Haas then stole second and third, and scored on a base hit by Amanda Tice to make it a 3-2 ballgame.
But that was as close as the Lady Yellowjackets would be for the remainder of the contest.
In the top of the fourth, Kate Yaun led off for Liberty by reaching on a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Waryha. DeMayo and LaGattuta walked to load the bases.
TerBushs infield poke was fumbled and Yaun and DeMayo scored. TerBush stole second and then crossed the plate on an error to give Liberty a 6-2 lead.
In the fifth frame, the Lady Indians scored five runs with two outs. Waryha singled and DeMayo walked. LaGattuta walked to fill the bases. Then a trio of consecutive Eldred errors cleared the bases, and set the stage for scores by TerBush and Olson to give Liberty a 11-2 lead.
In the top of the seventh, Liberty closed out the scoring by adding four more runs. TerBush reached on a base hit. After Olson popped up to third, Kristen Ahrens was hit by a pitch and Nicole Daurio singled. Sarah Crescitelli had a base hit. Yaun struck out, but two runs scored on the strike three passed ball, and another run crossed the plate on a miscue.
Back to the top of the batting order, a hit by Waryha drove in the final run of the afternoon to give the Lady Indians a 15-2 win.
We had a few errors, said Eldred pitcher Becky Ryman. Our season has been a little rough so far, but our hitting is improving . . . this game was one of the not so good ones.
According to Liberty hurler Michelle Olson, the game was all right . . . we came back from a couple of bad games. We were a little sluggish at times, but I think were putting it together. Its a good start for the week ahead.
Lady Yellow Jackets coach Dot McCrone didnt waste words in summing up the game.
We started off strong and then we fell apart with too many errors, she said.
Weve been in a dry spell, so it was nice to get back on track with a win, Liberty Coach John Wilhelm said. At one point, the game was close but then we started to pull away in the fourth.
Reflecting on the season as it nears midpoint, he said Weve had our ups and downs. We were 5-0 and them we had a couple of tough games. We shook up the line-up, and changed it around to give us a little kick-start.