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SOFTBALL: Chambersburg rides its bats to win over Greencastle

FAYETTEVILLE >> Greencastle-Antrim's softball team continued its struggles on defense, and Chambersburg's big hitters got the job done.

The Blue Devils committed four errors Monday, and the Trojans' 4-5-6 hitters drove in seven runs in a 9-5 non-league victory at Norlo Park.

"We tried to put a bit of pressure on the girls and make them realize that if they want to play past the regular season, we almost have to win out," said co-coach Ted Bittinger, whose Trojans (11-7) sat at No. 15 in the District 3 Class AAAA rankings before the win. "We keep winning, but we're not gaining much ground. We still have two big ones left."

The Blue Devils (11-6), who were sixth in Class AAA going into the game, lost back-to-back games for the first time this season, despite capitalizing on an error to take a 2-0 lead in the first inning.

"It's just the way our season has been going," Greencastle coach Mark DeCarli said. "They are a good team, but we can beat anyone if we're on our 'A' game, we're just never there. We can hit, but you can't out-hit everyone. We need someone to go out and make the big play."

Five different players finished with multiple hits for the Trojans, but it was the middle of the lineup that did the most damage.

Tara Harmon finished 3-for-3 with a double, run scored and three RBIs. She had a sacrifice fly in the first inning and a two-run single in the third inning that gave Chambersburg a 3-2 lead.

Harmon said, "I've been struggling a lot this season, and I'm not hitting the way I have in the past, but I'm still making good contact. We're slowly getting there."

Alyia Kauffman finished 1-for-3 with three RBIs, including a two-run sacrifice fly in the sixth. With the bases loaded and one out, Kauffman hit a deep fly ball to centerfield. Greencastle's Morgan Wagaman tracked the ball down and caught it while falling over the fence. Chelsea Sommerville and Lilly Nolan both scored on the play.

Leah Hunt finished 1-for-3 with a solo home run to left-centerfield to lead off the fourth inning. She also pitched two innings of relief, giving up two runs – one earned – with three strikeouts.

"We racked up a lot of hits today, and the middle of the order made the most of their opportunities," Bittinger said.

And while it was the middle of the order cashing in the runs, it was normally Caeley Etter starting the rallies from the leadoff spot. She finished the game 2-for-3 with two doubles and scored a pair of runs.

"My grandfather went into the hospital last Saturday, so I've been playing these last few games for him," Etter said. "It's funny actually, because my grandmother came up to me before the game and told me to get some big hits for him. So, those were for him."

Sommerville and Nolan both finished 2-for-4, and Laken Myers finished 2-for-3 with an RBI. She also improved to 8-4 on the mound, giving up three runs – one earned – on six hits and a strikeout. It was the Trojans' fifth consecutive win.

Etter said, "I think the win over State College last week really boosted our confidence. We've really started to work together, and it's really shown in our play here lately."

Greencastle's Ally Brown stayed hot, finishing 2-for-4, and Brooke Zeger and Erin Bontrager also both had two hits. The rest of the team combined to go 1-for-17 – Alicen Hoover hit an RBI double in the seventh inning.

DeCarli said, "Hopefully, we can finish with no more losses, and districts is a whole new story. We'll start fresh from there, and if the girls want to make it through a couple rounds, they have to pick it up."

Chambersburg 9, Greencastle 5

GreencastleChambersburgabrhbabrhbRoot dp2100Etter cf3220Wagmn cf2100Smrvile 2b4220Brown rf4120Nolan c4120Gelsinger c4000Harmn 3b3133Ward p3000Kaffmn rf3113Hoover ph1111Hunt dp3111Zeger 1b4120Myers p3021Bontrgr ss3020Kump cr0100Sherman lf2000Bender 1b3000Shockey 2b3001Secrist lf1000Obrhlzr 3b0000Shearr ph2000Glunt ss0000Totals28572Totals309138

E: GA 4, Chbg 3; LOB: GA 9, Chbg 6; 2B: Brown, Zeger, Hoover, Etter 2, Harmon; HR: Hunt (6); SAC: Sherman 2, Hunt; SF: Harmon, Kauffman; SB: Root, Sommerville 2.

Greencastle pitching

Ward (L,7-1)4.1107511Reitz1.222200

Chambersburg pitching

Myers (W,8-4) 563131Hunt212113

Myers pitched to 2 batters in the sixth inning.

WP: Ward, Reitz; PB: GA 1.

T: 2:10.

JV: Chambersburg 11, Greencastle 1. Kassidy Hunt finished 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs, and Maggie Myers and Bri Boyd both had 2 hits. Dori Loukopoulos gave up just 1 run in 6 innings with 12 strikeouts.