By Ted Waddell
LIVINGSTON MANOR April 24, 2007 It’s always nice to start off a new season with a victory.
The Lady Wildcats of Livingston Manor surely felt that way on Friday afternoon after weathering a late-game comeback by the visiting Tri-Valley Lady Bears to win Friday’s non-league softball game, 6-5.
After three scoreless innings, Manor (1-0) scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth. The key hit in the frame was a two-run double by Bionca Colton.
In the top of the sixth inning, T-V (1-2) scored a run in the wake of a stolen base and a couple of passed balls.
During their turn at bat in the bottom of the sixth, the Lady Wildcats sent two runners across the plate to make it a 6-1 ballgame.
Then came the seventh.
The Lady Bears scored four runs, two of which were scored on a single by Karyn Sheeley, to cut the Manor lead to just one run.
But Marissa Diescher, Manor’s eighth-grade pitcher then nailed down the victory. Diescher, who worked with senior catcher Colton, struck out 15 batters while earning the win.
Junior pitcher Kaylie Ackerley was tagged for the loss for T-V. She was backed up at the plate by sophomore catcher Bethany Huebsch.
Both teams have four returning seniors on their respective roster.
“I wish we could have come to life a lot quicker than in the seventh inning” T-V Coach Mary Feusner said. “We let the abilities of their pitcher get into our heads, and we didn’t step up our game.”
Feusner’s take on the new softball season?
“We’re still learning this game, and we’ve spent a lot of time inside,” the veteran coach said of her team and the lousy spring weather.
“We’re still working people into their positions and giving them confidence, and trying to get the veteran players to talk more, and communicate on the field,” she added. “We’re still coming together as a team.”
How did Manor Coach Gail Denman feel about her team’s win?
“I was real pleased with the way they did it,” she said.
How about the Lady Wildcats’ season?
“Hopefully, we’re going to have a winning season,” Denman replied. “It looks like they’re working well together, being aggressive at the plate and their defense is getting better.”
“We’re coming along real nice,” she added.