For the Norton Lancers’ softball team, all it took was one inning of offense to beat the Westwood Wolverines in a Tri-Valley league matchup. With both team’s pitchers performing well, the third inning of the 3-1 win over the Wolverines was all the Lancers needed to get their record back to .500.
“Good defense, timely runs, just putting the ball in play and pressuring them to make the plays,” Lancers’ coach Brian Clemmey said of his teams’ performance.
Small ball was the key to the Lancers’ success as all the team’s hits resulted in no more than a single for the batter.
“That’s what we’ve been working on a lot,” Clemmey said. “To make them (the opponent) make the play.“
A hit by Ashley Cibotti in the bottom of the third inning started what would become a three run scoring rally for the Lancers. Later in the inning with Cibotti at third and Kathy Remick at second, a single by Marisa Dole would score the opening two runs of the game to give Norton the lead. The third run would come off a sacrifice out by Caisey Calabro who was able to advance Dole on the play.
The Wolverines attempted to mount a comeback in the top of the sixth inning. Sheila O’Sullivan was able to score off of an Norton error that allowed Keria Travers to reach first base but that would be as much offensive production as the Wolverines could produce. A ground out by Alanna Piccirill ended the inning with two on for the Wolverines.
“I thought for the for most part we played a pretty good defensive effort and pitched very well. We just need to hit the ball better,” Westwood head coach Jonas Sherr said.
Keeping the Wolverines off base was Lancers’ pitcher Miranda Donato who kept Westwood off balance during the complete game victory. The junior pitcher struck out four and gave up no walks.
E.B. Messenio also pitched a complete game for the Wolverines, striking out two and walking one.
Remick led the way for the Lancers going 2-3 with a run. Dole went 1-3 with two RBIs. O’Sullivan went 2-3 with a run for the Wolverines.
The Lancers improve to 4-4 overall and 3-3 in Tri-Valley league play while Westwood falls to 5-3 overall and 3-3 in league play.
The Lancers play host to the undefeated Bellingham Blackhawks on Monday April 30 at 3:45 p.m. while the Wolverines will play the Hopkinton Hillers at home on the 30th at the same time.