Sock softball wins Section 3 title

It was very hot Friday evening at James Short Park as Loyalsock and Shik-Acorn faced off in the Section 3 best-of-three series tournament.

The weather, however, played no factor for Loyalsock as it won, 14-4 in four innings, capturing the Section 3 championship and moving on to the state tournament in Greenburg.

It did not get off to a great start for Loyalsock as Shik-Acorn scored four runs in the top of the second inning on a couple errors where Loyalsock just threw the ball all over the place.

“I went out to the mound to calm them down. They were throwing the ball around and hanging their heads down. I asked if they got it out of their system because we have bats and we are going to get out of this inning,” said Loyalsock coach John Clapper.

And bats they sure did have.

Loyalsock was down 4-2 and answered, as five straight singles after a pop up got it rolling.

Alena Barone had an RBI single that put Loyalsock back up, 5-4, and it was not done there. Loyalsock scored 10 runs in the bottom of the second and Bri Helmrich capped it off with a two-strike single that drove in two runs to put Loyalsock up, 12-4.

“We came out a little flat to start, but once we got those bats rolling, that was the team that I know,” Clapper said.

After the second inning ended, Loyalsock pitcher Jillian Kennedy settled in and found her groove. She struck out four of the remaining six outs that Loyalsock needed.

“Jillian is great. It’s really nice to have two pitchers that I can count on throughout this tournament. She hangs in there, she never gets her head down and she just keeps battling towards the next batter,” said Clapper.

Loyalsock went into the third inning knowing that it only needed two runs to end the game and it was trying to get it. It did not come easy as there were runners on second and third and two outs. Not only did Kennedy battle in the circle, she was a difference maker at the plate as well.

Kennedy drove the first pitch she saw right up the middle, which brought in both runners to score and Kennedy moved to third on a throwing error.

Shik-Acorn did not want this game to end, as the two leadoff batters both singled and there was runners on the corners with no outs. Kennedy came right back and struck out the next two batters and a nice catch by Loyalsock shortstop Katie Clapper ended the game and crowned Loyalsock sectional champions.

Loyalsock has shown that every player on its team is important and they all make an impact somehow.

Whether it be the 1-2 pitching duo of Clapper and Kennedy or the bats that always seem to be on, Loyalsock is going to be a hard out as the state tournament begins.

Loyalsock 14, Shik-Acorn 4

(4 INNINGS)

(SECTION 3 9-11 SOFTBALL

TOURNAMENT)

Loyalsock 210 2 — 14 13 3

Shik-Acorn 040 0 — 4 3 5

Kennedy and Barone Lenner and Hentzelman W–Kennedy L–Lenner

Top Loyalsock hitters: Bri Helmrich 2-3, 2 RBIs; Alena Barone 2-3, 3 RB’s; Jillian Kennedy 2-3, 2 RBIs; Easton Waller 2-3, RBI. Top Shik-Acorn hitters: Makenna Hoffman 2-2, RBI; Tarynn Hentzelman 1-2.

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