By Rob Potter
LIBERTY May 23, 2003 The seniors on the Liberty softball team made the most of their final regular season home game.
The Lady Indians scored four runs in the first inning and pitcher Kate Yaun held the Eldred batters in check as Liberty recorded a 6-2 victory in Wednesdays non-league game.
Prior to the contest, the seven Liberty seniors and their parents were honored. Those seniors are Rebecca Cohen, Nicole Daurio, Jamie Hopkins, Chelsea LaGattuta, Andrea TerBush, Christine Waryha and Yaun.
Youre a big reason the program is as successful as it is now, Coach John Wilhelm told the seniors as a small group of fans looked on. Youll be missed.
After setting down the Eldred batters in order in the top of the first, Yaun led off the bottom of the inning with a single. After Eldred recorded two outs, LaGattuta walked to put a pair of runners on base.
Brittany Strysko, who entered the game as a pinch runner for Yaun, stole third base and scored when the throw from Lady Yellowjacket catcher Jessica Cherry to third baseman Kim French went into the outfield. LaGattuta then scored on another Eldred error.
After Hopkins recorded an infield hit, Cohen walked to load the bases. Christina Hinton and Jackie Katzenberg then hit back-to-back singles to make it a 4-0 game.
Cohen tried to score on Katzenbergs hit, but was cut down at the plate on a fine throw from Lady Yellowjacket right fielder Brenda Ferry to Cherry.
Eldred (0-12) battled back with a run in the top of the fifth. Kim French scored on a groundout by Allie Schombs to cut the Lady Indian lead to 4-1.
In the bottom of the fifth, Liberty (11-6) loaded the bases with no outs. Waryha then scored when Kelly Lorino hit into a fielders choice. After Eldred pitcher Meg Shafer got the next two batters to hit infield fly balls, TerBush crossed the plate on a passed ball.
The Lady Yellowjackets closed the gap in the top of the sixth when Cherry hit a bloop single behind first base that allowed Ferry to score.
But that was all Eldred would get as Yaun allowed just that one hit and struck out 13.
Shes been throwing really well lately, Wilhelm said of Yaun. Today she had command of her pitches and threw strikes.
Despite the loss, Eldred Coach Jolene Porter was happy with her teams effort.
We stuck with it and battled back, she said. We didnt give up.
Porter also praised the performance of Shafer.
She got roughed up a little bit in that first inning, but she stayed with it, Porter said. She usually doesnt give up too easily.
While Eldred was scheduled to play Tri-Valley yesterday in its final game of the season, Liberty is focused on the Section IX tournament, which starts next week.
Weve been playing well the last few games, Wilhelm said. Well see what happens [in sectionals].