By Rob Potter
SULLIVAN COUNTY After being postponed from its original date of April 16 due to weather and field conditions, the annual Benny Chesnick Memorial Softball Tournament was held this past Saturday at two locations here in Sullivan County.
The Eldred Lady Yellowjackets, Livingston Manor Lady Wildcats and Tri-Valley Lady Bears played at the Grahamsville Fairgrounds. The Liberty Lady Indians and Monticello Lady Panthers played at Liberty Central School.
Based on the round-robin format of the tournament, each location had a championship team. At Grahamsville, Livingston Manor won the title by defeating Tri-Valley, 13-0, and Eldred, 20-5. At Liberty, Monticello won the title by defeating Liberty, 18-5, and 6-5. New Paltz was scheduled to be the third team playing at Liberty Central School, but was unable to attend the event.
In Manor’s win against T-V, Marissa Diescher tossed a no-hitter with 13 strikeouts. Victoria Taggart and Paige Clancy each went 2 for 2, while Clancy had two RBIs. Christine Babich added a triple for the Lady Wildcats.
In the Lady Wildcats’ victory against Eldred, Samantha Scott earned the win. She allowed five hits and had seven strikeouts.
Babich was 2 for 4 with a triple and three RBIs, Maggi Calo went 3 for 4 with two RBIs, Clancy was 2 for 3 with four RBIs, Diescher hit a home run and Taggart was 3 for 4 with a triple.
For the Lady Yellowjackets, Tomara Bodnariuk had a double and a home run and Alexis Pierce had three hits.
In Monticello’s first game against Liberty, pitcher Sam Cohn earned the win and helped her own cause by going 3 for 5 at the plate. Also pacing the Lady Panthers’ offense were Shannon Reese (3 for 4, a double and three RBIs), Paulina Pavese (4 for 5 and one RBI) and Aisha Brodie (3 for 4, a double and two RBIs).
In Game 2 at Liberty, the Lady Indians took a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. The Lady Indians increased their advantage to 5-0 in the top of the second on an RBI single by Jasmine Howard and a bases-loaded walk.
However, the Lady Panthers rallied for a 6-5 win.
Leading Monticello (4-9) to the victory were Emily Morey, who went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI, and Karissa Bennett, who was 2 for 3 and hit the game-winning RBI.
In the final game of the tournament, which was played at Grahamsville, T-V defeated Eldred, 8-7 by scoring four runs in the bottom of the seventh.
The score was close throughout the game as T-V took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first on a home run by Mareena DiMilia, but Eldred moved ahead by a 3-2 score in the top of the third.
After the Lady Bears took a 4-3 advantage, the Lady Yellowjackets scored a run in the top of the sixth to even the game at 4-4.
Eldred then scored three times in the top of the seventh to take a 7-4 advantage. All nine Lady Yellowjackets batted during the frame as wet conditions contributed to four walks and several passed balls. The Lady Bears committed two errors, which allowed Eldred to score those three runs.
In the bottom of the seventh, four Lady Bears crossed the plate on three hits and two errors. Erin Smith had an RBI and Kayla Yager hit the game-winning RBI.
DiMilia and Yager each went 3 for 4 at the plate.
Amanda TerBush got the win for the Lady Bears as she gave up only five hits and struck out five batters.
Alexis Pierce suffered the loss for Eldred. She led the Lady Yellowjackets’ offense with two hits and two RBIs.
Maxine Ellert and Kim Elvin each scored two runs for Eldred.