By Rob Potter
MONGAUP VALLEY April 30, 2004 Two fifth inning runs were the key Wednesday as visiting Goshen defeated Monticello in an OCIAA Division III softball game at Edward M. Collins Memorial Park.
With Goshen clinging to a 3-2 lead in the top of the fifth, the Lady Gladiators put together a rally. Raquel Gibson walked to lead off the inning and the next batter, Kerri Gannon, doubled to center field and Gibson scored to give Goshen a 4-2 lead.
Three batters later, Jess Cassel bunted with runners on first base and third base. Cassel was thrown out at first base for the second out of the frame, but Gannon scored on the play to give the Lady Gladiators a three-run advantage.
However, Monticello (1-4, 0-3 OCIAA) rallied in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Lady Panthers loaded the bases with no outs.
But Goshen pitcher Erin Lappe got two consecutive Monti batters to hit ground balls to third baseman Krista Fasnacht, who then threw the ball to catcher Cassel for the force out at home plate each time.
With those two outs, Monticellos Desiree Laguna was hit by a pitch. Laguna trotted to first as teammate Emily Zier crossed home plate to cut the Goshen lead to 5-3.
But Monticello could not score any more runs in the sixth. In the bottom of the seventh, Lappe struck out two of the three batters she faced to preserve Goshens win.
We just didnt take care of the ball today and we didnt execute the bunt [when we needed to], Monticello Coach Ed Kaufmann said.
Monticello starting pitcher Rachael Huffman recorded four strikeouts in five innings. Senior Francine Kaiser pitched the sixth and seventh innings for the Lady Panthers.
Goshen (7-7, 2-1 OCIAA) almost added another run in the top of the seventh, but Lappe was thrown out at home plate while attempting to score on a fly ball to the outfield.
Note: Huffman picked up her first career varsity victory last Saturday afternoon when Monticello defeated Liberty, 16-5, in the consolation game of the Sullivan County Softball Officials Softball Tournament.