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Four-run fifth lifts Williamsport

April 03, 2007|by DAN KAUFFMAN

WILLIAMSPORT - Softball, like many games, is a game of swings.

Fortunately for Williamsport, its three biggest swings all came in a four-run fifth inning, lifting the Wildcats past Boonsboro 4-2 in a tightly contested MVAL Antietam contest.

Trailing 1-0 and stymied by the craftiness of Warriors pitcher Bridgette Ringley through four innings, Williamsport (3-1, 2-0) turned things around in the fifth, starting with No. 9-hitter Laura Smith's leadoff double to the left-field gap.

"That was great," Wildcats coach Tom Dzur said of the hit that started the rally. "She was really looking to hit one, and she nailed it."

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After Emily Myers lined out to Ringley, Smith reached third on a wild pitch. Ali Zube worked a walk and advanced to second on catcher's indifference, which set the stage for Casey Siles. She worked the count full before grounding a pitch through the infield, driving in Smith and Zube for a 2-1 lead.

"We just needed those two runs big-time," Dzur said. "She took her into the count, battled her and nailed one."

Jess Patey - who struck out in her previous at-bat against Ringley - put that behind her and put the Warriors further behind with a line-drive, two-run homer to left center to make it 4-1.

"She can hit a ball, and she has a beautiful swing," Dzur said. "I wanted her to hit a line drive, and she did, it just went further than I imagined it would."

The four-run outburst made a winner out of Emily Huff (2-0), who allowed two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out seven.

"She had a nice outing," Dzur said. "She's around the zone, throws hard and never gives in."

Huff was helped by Boonsboro's bad luck, as Karley Kaetzel, Jamie Donato and Alison Griffith all hit smoking line drives right to infielders for outs during the contest.

"They called us with two hits, and we needed to answer it but we never did," Warriors coach Lisa Lewis said. "It will come. It's a matter of getting experience in games like this where they learn to buckle down and battle back."

Ringley was the hard-luck loser, allowing the four runs, five hits and four walks while striking out seven. She did not allow a hit until the fourth inning.

Breanna Lohman went 3-for-3 with two doubles for Boonsboro (1-3, 1-1). She drove in Katie Marshall with her third-inning double, added her second double in the sixth and scored on Donato's groundout.

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