Goodman’s challenge gets South majors within 1 win of regional title game
BRISTOL, Conn. — On Sunday, Cory Goodman talked about his regret during a first-inning at-bat, when the head coach lamented not electing to have one of his South Williamsport softball players lay down a sacrifice bunt to move a runner into scoring position during a win over New Jersey.
That moment may have felt like a small strategic mistake, but on Monday, Goodman made perhaps his best, most crucial managerial decision in a Little League Softball Eastern Regional Tournament game against Massachusetts.
With South Williamsport clinging to a 2-1 lead, one that felt even more razor thin as Massachusetts was starting to pick up momentum, Gianna Goodman was called out trying to steal home on a bases-loaded passed ball to end the fourth inning.
Cory Goodman challenged the play, and Gianna was eventually ruled safe upon video replay review. Moments later, Mikaiya Hills scored on another passed ball, and Lily Reidy drove an RBI double to left field for a critical turning point in a 5-1 victory.
Also helping a win that sets South Williamsport (2-0) with a 7 p.m. game today against the winner of New York and Connecticut, which will be played this morning, were RBI singles by Kendall Cardone and Lacey Kriebel to score Sage Lorson and Cardone for a 2-0 lead in the first inning.
South Williamsport had to battle back from a rare deficit on Sunday, but just as it did throughout the district, sectional and state tournaments, the club got out to an early lead before racing to the finish line.
That also included the help of a second straight dominant start from Alizabeth Schuler. The right-hander completed back-to-back complete-game gems with her effort on Monday, allowing just one unearned run with 10 strikeouts and no walks in a two-hitter.
Due to impending thunderstorms and heavy rainfall that forced them to head back early to their dorm rooms at the Giamatti Little League Center, no managers or players were available for comment after the game.
Reidy finished 2-for-3, while Lorson, Cardone, Kriebel, Hills, Lynna Clark and Chelsey Harrison each tallied one of the team’s eight hits.
South Williamsport 5, Massachusetts 1
Massachusetts 000 100 — 1 2 0
South 200 30x — 5 8 1
Avery Grieco and Kiley Doolin.
Alizabeth Schuler and Lily Reidy. W — Schuler. L — Grieco.
Top Massachusetts hitters: Logan Tomasney 1-3; Lizzy Bettencourt 1-2 run.
Top South hitters: Lily Reidy 2-3 2 2Bs, RBI; Sage Lorson 1-3 run; Kendall Cardone 1-3 RBI, run; Lynna Clark 1-2 2B; Lacey Kriebel 1-1 RBI; Chelsey Harrison 1-1; Mikalya Hills 1-1 run.