Littlestown's win against Delone Catholic gives Bolts bragging rights
There might have been hugs before the game and selfies with each other after, but the Littlestown and Delone Catholic softball teams wanted nothing more than to out-do each other for seven innings on Saturday afternoon.
After all, there were bragging rights at stake.
"They're friends before and after, but when the umpire says, 'Play ball,' they know it means business," Littlestown coach Henry Wardrop said. "I think that does build in more motivation to go out and do well."
In a battle of two of the best teams in the Hanover-Adams area, Littlestown (7-2, 6-1 Div. III) added five insurance runs in the final two frames and pulled away from Delone, 7-2.
Most of the girls on both sides play club and travel softball together, which added a sense of familiarity, and an added urge to strike out their friends, Littlestown pitcher McKenzie Somers said.
"I just really wanted to win that game," Somers said. "I have a lot of friends on that team, so it just feels so good."
Somers picked up the win, giving up just two runs and striking out seven over seven innings.
In front of a loud, engaged crowd, the teams played about as evenly as they could through five innings.
"This was a very, very good game, and so many people came out to see the girls play," Wardrop said. "How great is that?"
Delone (5-3, 4-2 Div. IV) struck first with a first-inning RBI sac fly by Cassie Rickrode, who also pitched a complete game.
The Bolts countered with two runs in the top of the third. Lindsay Snyder walked and later scored on a passed ball, then Shelby Dews scored on an Amanda Dyson sac fly.
Shayna Rider briefly gave Delone the lead again with an RBI in the bottom of the fifth.
But the Bolts were determined to add a signature win to their resume.
In the top of the sixth, Dyson belted a triple to deep left field with one out. As she rounded second and turned toward third, the Bolts' crowd urged Wardrop to send her home. Wardrop resisted. He knew who was coming up in the lineup, he said.
Two batters later, Somers reached base and Dyson scored to take the lead on a misplayed ball in the infield.
"It's definitely the biggest win of the season," Somers said. "They have been a really good competitor for the past couple years. I've been working really hard and preparing for this game. It feels really awesome to come out here and get this one."
Delone put two runners on with one out in the bottom of the sixth, but left both runners stranded in scoring position when Somers induced a pop fly and struck out Carly Coleman to end the inning.
"She pitched a heck of a game," Wardrop said of Somers. "I do think it was one of her better outings."
The Bolts lineup backed up Somers with four insurance runs in the seventh.
Michaela Yealy and Vickie Skillman opened the inning with back-to-back singles. After Dews knocked in a run with a sac fly and two more Bolts reached on errors in the infield, Kaitlin Yealy belted a two-run double to left field, giving Littlestown a comfortable, five-run lead.
"You beat a very good team," Wardrop said of his message to the Bolts. "But you also picked up some bragging rights."
Littlestown 7, Delone Catholic 2
DC, Cassie Rickrode and Lauryn King, Lt, McKenzie Somers and Amanda Dyson
SO-BB — DC, Rickrode 6-3, Lt, Somers 7-1; W — Somers; L — Rickrode; 2B — Lt, Kaitlin Yealy; 3B — Lt, Amanda Dyson.