The Globe's Chris Estrada and Amanda Bruno check in with longer recaps from Saturday's tournament action.
From the volleyball court, Bruno recaps Lincoln-Sudbury's 3-0 triumph over Milford in a Central sectional final. From the softball diamond, Estrada recounts King Philip's 10-1 trouncing of Hockomock-league rival Stoughton in a first-round matchup.
softball > division 1
No. 3 King Philip 10, No. 14 Stoughton 1
By Chris Estrada, Globe Correspondent
PLAINVILLE -- After beating Hockomock League rival Stoughton twice in the regular season, King Philip made sure that the third time wouldn’t be the charm for the Black Knights in their MIAA Division 1 South first-round game Saturday.
The league champion Warriors exploded on offense with five home
runs -- two from first baseman Cara Daly, while pitcher Jen Jones
held up her end with a four-hitter in a 10-1 victory at the Plainville Athletic
The Warriors will now get a home quarterfinal game against either 11th-seeded Milton on Monday at 3:30 p.m.
‘We’re a good hitting team, and today, we just happened to be on it,’ said King Philip coach Jim Leonard. ‘The girls have been good, disciplined hitters all season long and today, we saw some good results from good discipline and fundamentals.’
Daly couldn’t say if she and her teammates figured out what Stoughton pitcher Erin Flaherty was trying to do. Instead, she said that the Warriors were simply ‘in the zone.’
"Erin, she pitches strikes, she pitches well, and we just hit them," she said. ‘That’s about all I can say."
The Warriors got started in the first with a leadoff double from Sara Hedtler, who was brought home two batters later by catcher Maggie Quealy’s two-run homer to center field. Flaherty then gave up a walk and a single, but got out of the jam with back-to-back strikeouts.
Unfortunately for her and the Black Knights, things didn’t improve. With two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the second, KP’s Casey McCourt hit a two-run double to center to make it 4-0. In the third, Anna Kelley pushed the lead to 5-0 with a solo homer.
Stoughton tried to manufacture some offense in the top of the fourth, when catcher Erica Batchelder hit a single to left field. Following her was Flaherty, who tagged a drive to center and wound up with a double. During that hit, pinch runner Christine Howe, who took over for Batchelder at first, attempted to take third base, but she was foiled as the relay throw reached Kelley in time for the tag. The next two Stoughton batters hit pop flies to Jones to end the inning.
"When you gotta play a team like King Philip -- we're not an offensive powerhouse and we have to make things happen," said Black Knights coach Janet Sullivan.
"She wanted to come into third and I have no problem with it. If they make a bad throw or if it's a split-second later, we're in business... We had to be aggressive on the basepaths and just be as aggressive as we could be, because we're not going to power the ball the way they can, so we gotta make it happen in other ways."
In the bottom half of the inning, Daly hit her first solo homer of the day for a 6-0 KP edge. The fifth inning saw McCourt get a three-run homer to right field as the ball popped out of the Stoughton outfielder’s glove when she hit the fence (she was okay). One batter later, Daly capped the Warriors’ scoring with her second solo shot of the afternoon.
Stoughton's lone run came in the top of the seventh with a pinch-hit RBI double from Jessica Drago that drove in Howe from second base.
By Amanda Bruno, Globe Correspondent
WESTBOROUGH -- After losing to Natick in the Central finals a year ago, Lincoln-Sudbury took care of some unfinished business Saturday and captured its first-ever sectional crown as the Warriors defeated Milford, 3-0, Saturday on scores of 25-14, 25-20, and 25-20.
L-S (21-1) advances to the state seifinals and will meet the winner of Monday's Western final between Chicopee Comprehensive and Ludlow.
“It feels great. We have never gotten this far and it's just awesome,” said senior outside hitter Lucas Rathjens. “The whole team played well. Drew [Corwin] was hitting great, Danny [Letizi] was setting well, it was great we just came together today.”
Added L-S coach Bunny McClung: “It was fortunate that we had tough matches through the season so we’ve seen some of the big teams in the tournament during the regular season and I think that helped us. Also having a tough match against Natick was [in our favor] as well.”
It took the Warriors a little bit to figure out Milford (22-1) at the get go as they found themselves trailing early, 4-1, in Game 1 after Manny Amingwa (eight kills) launched a split-second decision kill sending the Milford crowd into a frenzy.
But L-S buckled down and got some big blockage by senior setter Letizi and Rathjens to help the Warriors take a 6-5 lead. That sent L-S into a groove as they eventually won by 11 points.
In Game 2, Letizi (22 assists, two aces) amped up his team and rattled Milford’s back row with eight service points in a row. The Scarlet Hawks finally got on the board, however, after a couple of L-S errors and rallied within a point at 14-13 before L-S maintained its composure and got out of the jam.
“They are rocks out there. They are so solid,” said McClung. “There’s a trust amongst our team members. They just know that they can count on each and if someone makes a mistake here and there, even if we had two in a row, there’s no doubt that we’re going to come back and make everything right again.”
That happened quite a bit in the decisive Game 3 for L-S where the two teams got caught up in six stalemates. L-S took the lead for good when Letizi set up Corwin (12 kills) to take a 12-11 lead.
“Obviously it wasn’t the best we’ve performed,” said Milford coach Linda Zacchilli. “I got to give Lincoln-Sudbury credit because they took us out of our game, but we didn’t play our best either, they took advantage of our weaknesses.
“We struggled with passing, something that we haven’t done all season long. Passing the ball is usually one of our strengths. They served tough floaters and my guys had a little bit of trouble adjusting to them.”
It was definitely a tough night for Milford as Petar Yanakiev led with nine kills and setter Chris Chamberlin had 10 assists.
Several reporters and editors contribute updates, news and analysis to the High School Sports Blog.
- Bob Holmes: A Reading resident (Go Rockets!) and Boston College graduate, Holmes is the Boston Globe High School Sports Editor. We remind you now that his weekly picks are often made in jest so everyone just calm down when he picks against Everett for 11 straight weeks. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeHolmes.
- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GlobeSchools for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our fall correspondents:
- Anthony Gulizia | @gulizia_a | Div. 1 football
- Eric Russo | @erusso22 | Div. 2 football
- Stephen Sellner | @stephen_sellner | Div. 3 football
- Andrew MacDougall | @Andy_MacDougall | Div. 4 football
- Greg Joyce | @GJoyce9 | Div. 5 football
- Lorenzo Recupero | @LorenzoRecupero | Div. 6 football
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Girls volleyball
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