The Daily Star
---- — Staff Report
During this 12-1 start to the season for Oneonta High’s softball team, two things have become clear: Brieanna Baker can pitch and the Yellowjackets’ lineup can hit.
Baker, a sophomore, struck out 14 and walked three while scattering eight hits, and Brianna Haines, Shelby Cleaveland and Amy Hait had two hits apiece to lead host OHS to a 9-2 Southern Tier Athletic Conference victory over Susquehanna Valley on Saturday.
OHS finished with 10 hits, including doubles by Cami Cleaveland and Hayley Dower, and triples by Hait and Baker.
The Yellowjackets have scored nine or more runs in a game six times this season.
“It’s a combination of things,” OHS coach Randy Brockway said. “We’re doing a weightlifting program and I think we’re stronger and older. We’re hitting the ball real well. Even our lefties in the past have had a tough time getting the ball out of the infield, but now we’re getting good shots to the outfield.
“It’s exciting we’re hitting the ball as strong as we are,” he continued. “It’s a combination of small ball and long ball. In the past, we were not a team that could put that many runs up. We’re just a balanced lineup one through nine.”
The Yellowjackets benefited from Sabers errors to score three times in the first inning to take a 3-0 lead. Hait had an RBI single in the inning.
“Amy is working herself up in the order,” Brockway said of Hait, who had two RBIs and scored twice. “She’s making good contact. She’s a strong kid with a good eye.”
The Yellowjackets earned their second win this season against an SV squad that ended OHS’ season a year ago with a 4-3 victory in a Section Four Class B semifinal. The first time the teams met, OHS won, 6-1.
Oneonta — 11-1 in STAC and tied atop of the East Division standings with Windsor — will travel to Owego today.
Cooperstown 7, F-S 0
Senior Nicole Cring struck out 11 and walked two in a two-hitter and hit a two-run triple in the seventh inning to lead unbeaten Cooperstown to a Center State Conference road victory.
Cooperstown (12-0, 8-0) took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, when Alannah Haggerty scored on a double-steal.
Christina Noto’s RBI single in the second inning made it 2-0. First baseman Noto finished 2-for-4 and made diving catch in foul territory and leaped to catch a soft liner.
During a three-run fifth inning, Cooperstown’s Jen Flynn singled and stole home as part of a double-steal.
Cooperstown will travel to Sherburne-Earlville today.
Milford wins title
Winning pitcher Kaitlin VanWinkler pitched out of two-on and no-out jam in the top of the seventh inning as the host school beat Roxbury, 6-5, in the championship game of the Milford Booster Club Tournament.
Trailing, 6-5, Kendal Sprague led off Roxbury’s seventh with a single. She went to second when the next batter reached on an error. Marissa Greene then hit a liner up the middle that Milford second baseman caught for the first out.
VanWinkler then induced the next two batters to ground to first to end it.
“It was a pretty good ballgame,” said Milford coach Jim Weir, whose team is 11-0. “I’ll tell you, the (Kendal) Sprague girl throws hard. She gets it in there pretty good. We did some things we needed to do. We moved runners and did the things we needed to win it.”
Milford scored twice in the fourth to take a 6-5 lead. Mataiah Waters hit an RBI single and Peggy Paffenroth’s ground-rule double to right-center scored Waters with the go-ahead run.
After Roxbury scored three times in the top of the second, Milford answered with four runs in the bottom of the inning. Addy Lawson hit a three-run double to right-center in the inning.
Roxbury (8-5) scored twice in the fourth to take a 5-4 lead. Shannon Sprague’s single to right scored two runs.
Shannon Sprague had three hits, and Kendal Sprague and Kaelie VanLoan had two hits apiece for the Rockets.
Waters and Peggy Paffenroth had two hits apiece for Milford, which opened the tournament with a 25-0 win over Hunter-Tannersville.
Paffenroth had four hits, including a grand slam in the second. Lawson finished with three hits.
Milford will play at Cherry Valley-Springfield on Tuesday.
Laurens 14, H-T 13
Kayla Johnson had four hits and Claire Fraser finished with three as Laurens won the consolation game of the Milford Booster Club Tournament.
The Leopards were forced to play with eight players when Junior Shalyn Tilley pulled her left hamstring in the fourth inning.
“She hit a single and pulled it running to second,” Laurens coach Allen Ruffles said.
Tilley led a six-run second inning with a three-run double.
Trailing, 14-10, in the bottom of the sixth, Hunter-Tannersville rallied for three runs.
Brieanna Verdon’s two-run single made it 14-12. Verdon later scored on a sacrifice fly Heather Murin to make it a one-run game.
Winning pitcher Jess Hadlock had six strikeouts.
Christina Ferguson finished with two hits for H-T.
Laurens (2-8) will play a doubleheader at Franklin today.
Roxbury 11, Laurens 1
Senior pitcher Kendal Sprague struck out 11 in a one-hitter and drove in four runs at the plate to lead Roxbury to a first-round victory in the Milford Booster Club Tournament.
Sprague (6-2), who walked five and hit a batter, finished 3-for-4 with three runs. Younger sister Shannon Sprague, a sophomore, also went 3-for-4 with three runs for the Rockets, who scored five times in the bottom of the fifth to take an 8-1 lead.
Both Sprague’s doubled, as did teammate Marissa Greene.
Roxbury (8-3) hosts Jefferson today.
Oneonta 18, SV 3
Half of the host Yellowjackets’ 14 hits went for extra bases, including a sixth-inning home run by Kragh Delello, as Oneonta High cruised to a Southern Tier Athletic Conference victory.
Delello, a junior, hit his first varsity home run to left field to cap the scoring.
The Yellowjackets took an 8-2 lead after scoring five runs in the second. Collin Neer hit an RBI double and Chris Pindar had a two-run single in the inning.
Neer finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs and four runs as the Yellowjackets bounced back from 4-3 and 11-10 losses to Windsor and Chenango Forks, respectively, last week.
“We had two tough losses in a row,” OHS coach Joe Hughes said. “The Windsor game was a tough loss. That was a tough pill to swallow. We come back the next day against Forks and make a furious comeback. We just kept plugging and just fell short in the last inning. It was good to see us bounce back from those losses.”
Josh Garufi had two hits and scored three runs, Zach King hit two doubles, and Jonathan Vega had two hits for OHS.
“For the first three innings, we hit the ball extremely well,” Hughes said. “It might have been carryover from the Forks game (on Friday). We scored seven runs in the last two inning of that game. If you take those two innings and the first three innings Saturday, we had very productive innings.”
Winning pitcher Noah Sheehan struck out three and walked one in a five-hitter.
“He had good control,” Hughes said of Sheehan, who is 2-1. “It was his best stuff yet as a varsity player. He had good command of his fastball and curveball.”
The Yellowjackets (9-5, 7-5) will travel to Owego today.
Walton 13, Afton 6
Trevor Zandt went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs to lead Walton to a Midstate Athletic Conference win on the road.
Teammates Steven Klein and Dalton Kaminsky each had an RBI and Kaminsky scored twice.
With two outs in the bottom of the second, Josh Davy’s three-run triple helped Afton to a four-run lead.
Josh Austin, Joe DeVona and Connor Graven-Briggs all scored on the hit.
After Walton tied the scored at 4 in the top of the third, Josh Austin singled in James Westfall to give the Crimson Knights the lead, 5-4.
Walton then scored eight times in the fifth.
Trevor Zandt doubled to start the inning. After Kaminsky was intentionally walked, a passed ball moved the runners to second and third. Joe Sinistore followed with a two-run single to make it 6-5.
Sinistore went to second on passed ball and scored Klein’s RBI single.
Matt Olin contributed a homer over the right-field fence in the bottom of the seventh for Afton (3-13), which will play at Oxford today.
Hancock 24, G-MU 1
Eli Holton went 3-for-6 with three RBIs and to lead visiting Hancock to a non-league win.
Winning pitcher Ryan Slatcher struck out four over four innings and allowed six hits.
Catcher Lane Bass relieved Slatcher in the fifth and allowed no hits for the save.
“Both pitchers did a good job at keeping it in the zone,” Gilbertsville-Mount Upton coach Rick Mohrien said of the Wildcats pitchers.
Chris Cole had two hits and teammate Andrew Baker had one hit and an RBI for the Raiders.
Baker’s single scored Dan Primrose in the first inning to give G-MU the first run of the game.
G-MU (4-9, 4-6) will play at Downsville on Wednesday.
RS 24, Franklin 9
Tom Worobey had four hits and three RBIs, and Luke VanRiper and Nicolas Nicoletta had three hits apiece to lead visiting Richfield Springs to a Tri-Valley League victory.
Joe Terrano had three hits for Franklin (2-7), who will host Laurens in a doubleheader at 4:15 today.