By Rob Potter
ELDRED The Eldred Lady Yellowjackets overcame an early deficit to earn a 10-9 victory over the visiting Family School Lady Falcons last Tuesday afternoon in an Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division VI softball game.
Being down 6-0 didn’t faze the Lady Yellowjackets at all as they scored seven runs in the bottom of the second inning to grab a 7-6 lead.
Eldred (4-14, 1-5 Div. VI) then added to its lead in the bottom of the third. Steph Compasso led off the frame with a single to right field and advanced to third base on two passed balls. She then scored when Kaitlin Terry grounded out.
Heather Ouellette then drew a walk from Lady Falcon pitcher Denise Tagariello. Ouellette scored when Sam Ferguson bunted and a throw to second base in an attempt to force out Ouellette was errant and ended up in the outfield.
Ferguson scored moments later on a groundout by Lauren Hazen to give the Lady Yellowjackets a 10-6 advantage.
The Family School (4-12, 2-5 Div. VI) responded by scoring twice in the top of the fifth and once in the top of the sixth.
In the fifth, Jillian McClintock crossed the plate on a sacrifice bunt by Natasha Smith and Kassia Bennett scored on an error.
In the sixth, leadoff batter Sheree Brutcher walked and scored on a single by Sarah Berry.
Tagariello gave the Lady Falcons a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning by blasting a solo home run. She had two-run double to key a five-run outburst in the top of the second.
For the game, Tagariello was 3-for-3 with four RBIs and two runs scored.
Joslyn Pope went 1-for-3 with a pair of RBIs for The Family School.
Ferguson, Kim Elvin and Rachel Smith led the Lady Yellowjackets’ offense.
Ferguson was 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored, Elvin was 1-for-4 with a triple and two RBIs and Smith went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
In addition, Smith was the winning pitcher for Eldred.
Eldred Coach Jolene Porter was not surprised that her team rebounded to win the game after falling behind in the early going.
“This group of girls doesn’t know the meaning of the word ‘quit,’” Porter said. “They kept working hard and were able to come back and win the game.
“This is a great group of kids,” she added. “We’ve had a good time this season.”
Family School Coach Melissa Dunlap noted that errors made the difference in the contest.
“The game had evenly-matched efforts with good bats by both teams,” Dunlap said. “A few less errors on our end could have put us over the top with the chance of sectionals still in play. It was a good learning experience for our girls in terms of dealing with stressful situations and challenging calls.
“The team has come a long way with only two starters and three players overall returning from last year,” she added. “With each game, the players learn and develop further. This has been an overall good season with a prospective window for improvement for next year.”