By Rob Potter
LIBERTY June 15, 2004 The Combined Energy Services (CES) softball team used its bats early and often last Thursday evening in a Sullivan County Womens Softball League game versus Mr. Willys.
CES pounded out several hits, scored in every inning but one and overcame two deficits en route to posting an 18-11 victory over Mr. Willys in a B Division contest at the Liberty Elementary School field.
CES improved to 4-1 on the season while handing Mr. Willys its first defeat of 2004. Mr. Willys now has a 5-1 record.
Consecutive RBI triples by Nikomi Thompson and Cheryl Sheerer in the bottom of the first gave CES a 3-0 lead.
Mr. Willys answered with a run in the top of the second. With one out and two teammates on base, Jessica Torres beat out a grounder to shortstop. Sue Sheeley scored on the play to cut the CES advantage to 3-1.
In the top of the third, Mr. Willys scored four runs to transform that two-run deficit into a two-run lead. Mother-and-daughter Sue and Megan Sheeley had an RBI single and RBI double, respectively, to knot the score at 3-3. Later in the frame, Mr. Willys scored two runs on a throwing error by CES.
But CES scored five runs in the bottom of the third to regain its advantage. With two teammates on base and no outs, Thompson ripped a double to left field that brought both Krys Stant and Barb Ward-Blank across home plate to make it a 5-5 ballgame.
Two batters later, Chrissy Powers singled to left field to bring Thompson around to score. Later in the frame, Chris Lopez stroked a two-run single into left center field to give CES an 8-5 lead.
However, Mr. Willys answered with four runs in the top of the fourth. With one out and two runners on, Megan Sheeley beat out a ground ball to shortstop and Tina Johnstone scored on the play to make it a 8-6 game. Two batters later, Jen Cole knotted the score at 8-8 by smacking a two-run double to left field.
The next batter, Diane Meyer, singled to right field to give Mr. Willys a 9-8 advantage.
After Thompson tied the score at 9-9 with an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth, Mr. Willys regained the lead in the top of the fifth. Chrissy Schiff began the frame by ripping a double to left center field. Schiff then scored on a groundout by Johnstone. Three batters later, Johnstone scored on a CES error to give Mr. Willys an 11-9 lead.
But that was the last run Mr. Willys would score in the contest.
In the bottom of the fifth, CES scored five times to take a 14-11 lead. Then in the sixth, CES added four insurance runs to take a seven-run lead into the final inning.
The key hit in the fifth was a three-run home run by Lopez that gave CES the lead for good. Later in the frame, Ward-Blank ripped a two-run triple to right field to give CES a three-run lead.
With one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth, Chrissy Klein and Anna Puleo hit back-to-back singles to give CES a 17-11 lead. CES recorded its final run of the contest moments later when Klein scored on a single by Stant.
We are happy, Stant said. This season we are all playing well together and having fun. No pressure, thats our motto.
While disappointed by the loss, Mr. Willys player/coach Schiff figured that her teams winning streak would end at some point this season.
We played really well, but you cant win them all, she said.
Schiff also noted that CES played an outstanding game.
They did a great job of hitting the ball tonight, she said.