Skip to main content

South Western softball beats West York for fifth straight win

The month of April has been kind to the South Western softball team. It has not been kind to West York.

After starting the season 1-3 and mired at the bottom of the division, the Mustangs have reeled off five straight wins, including Friday's 3-1 home win against the Bulldogs, who have lost six of seven.

Allie Fleming pitched a complete game against the Bulldogs, while giving up just one run, no walks and eight hits. The senior struck out six batters, and her offense backed her up with three runs in the first two innings.

Other than an April 2 loss to Dallastown, the Mustangs (6-3, 5-3 YAIAA Division I) have given up a combined seven runs during their win streak. Fleming has been a big key to that, according to interim coach Eric Toomey.

"She's always good at mixing up outside and inside and throwing in some off-speed stuff," Toomey said of Fleming. "It has worked well for her and she has had a great year."

On Friday, the Mustangs' ace retired the side in order with just four pitches in the first inning. It took six pitches to retire the Bulldogs (5-6, 4-4 YAIAA Division II) in the second.

"My screwballs were working really well today," Fleming said. "A lot of the balls they were swinging at that looked like balls were the screwballs because it starts as a strike and comes out."

While Fleming was making quick work of the West York lineup with her screwball, the Mustangs were scoring early on.

Hannah Glover opened the first with a bloop hit to shallow right. Glover hustled out a double and Katelin Willingham followed with a bloop single to center field. Two batters later, Glover scored on a Bailey Moses RBI double.

Five of South Western's 10 hits off Kayla Michael, who pitched a complete game, came in the first two innings.

"I thought she pitched a great game," West York coach Chris Ilyes said of Michael. "Most of the hits she was giving up early on were bloop hits."

Michael struck out the last two hitters in the first, stranding two Mustangs in scoring position. Toomey considered waving Willingham home on Moses' double, but opted not to, he said.

"I thought about it and I wanted to get them going and get excited," Toomey said with a laugh. "But sometimes you have to be safe."

Kate Peck walked to open the second and scored three batters later on an RBI single by Glover, making it 2-0 in favor of the Mustangs. Willingham added another run with an RBI sac fly later in the inning.

"We're playing well and we're just in a situation where we're relaxed and settled in now," Toomey said. "We're gaining some momentum."

The Bulldogs answered in the third. Kelsie Weaver laced a single to center field that scored Keara Nepler, cutting the lead to 3-1. While the Bulldogs scattered eight hits, they couldn't seem to put together a rally to threaten the Mustangs' lead.

"Our bats have gone cold the last five or six games," Ilyes said. "Everything we hit seems to be going at them. We're not getting the bloop hits like they were tonight. Our bats are just cold."

West York brought the tying run to the plate with one out in the seventh, but failed to capitalize.

"I just tell them to keep doing what they're doing and be aggressive at the plate," Ilyes said. "They're going to start falling. Things are going to start clicking. All we can do is keep swinging."

South Western will look to extend its winning streak further with six games in the next seven days, including a tournament.

"We have a big week coming up for us," Toomey said. "We're looking forward to the challenge and we'll see what we can do."

South Western 3, West York 1

West York0010000—180South Western1200000—3100

WY, Kayla Michael and Kelsie Weaver, SW, Allie Fleming and Allie Zombro

SO-BB — WY, Michael 7-2, SW, Fleming 6-0; W — Fleming; L — Michael; 2B — SW 2 (Bailey Moses, Hannah Glover); 3B — SW, Zombro.