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NTL SOFTBALL: TROY CAN'T GET THE BATS GOING IN LOSS TO DEFENDING DISTRICT CHAMPIONS, SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT (2024-05-28)

BY CHRIS MANNING
Northern Tier Sports Report
WILLIAMSPORT — Troy softball’s defense kept them in the game, but they couldn’t get their bats going as they fell to the defending district champions, South Williamsport, 3-0 in the District IV, Class AA semifinal Tuesday.

“Defensively we showed up this year,” Troy coach Wayne Pratt said. “We didn’t give up as many runs as we did last year, but we’ve done that all year long. Our defense has been very strong this year, I’m really proud of what our defense has done all year long. Offensively, we hit it right at them, and the Goodman girl at shortstop, we just couldn’t get it by her - she was everywhere. They played very good on defense as well.”


The Trojans didn’t give up any big innings, with South squeezing out runs in the second, fourth, and fifth innings.


The Mounties did out hit Troy, 6-3, with Sydnee Bellows (2-for-3) leading the Trojans at the plate. Kali Ayres (1-for-2) also had a hit.


Lauren Ridall got the start, and took the loss, going four innings with one strikeout, no walks, five hits, and two runs, one of which was earned.


Olivia Champluvier tossed the next two innings, striking out one with no walks, one hit, and one unearned run.


For South Kendall Cardone (2-for-3) had an RBI while Lily Reidy (1-for-2) hit a solo home run. Gianna Goodman (1-for-3) self manufactured a run in the sixth to add to their insurance.


Alizabeth Schuler got the win, striking out six with one walk, and three hits in seven innings of work, as she finished with 99 pitches.


“Schuler kept us in check,” said Pratt. “They couldn’t get the real power behind our hits, and then when we finally did it, they were right to somebody.”


Troy was never able to get a runner past first base the entire game.


“We just had to adjust as we went along, and the one thing Schuler did was she adjusted her pitches as we went along,” explained Pratt. “In the regular season pitchers kind of pitch the same pitches every inning, so our girls are able to adjust. Schuler, she changed the way she pitched. If you look at the first couple of innings she was bringing the heat, during the middle she slowed down a little bit more movement, and then, at the end, she started bringing the heat again, so it was just enough to keep us from really zeroing in.”


It was a little bit different feel than last year’s 11-10 contest that saw Troy score more runs against the Mounties than any other team that season.


“It’s why we play the game,” Pratt said. “It was a great game, 3-0 against a class act like South Williamsport, it’s nothing to hang our heads about.”


Reidy hit her solo home run in the bottom of the second, an inning in which it looked like South might push across a few runs. However, Bellows in left caught a hard hit line drive, then threw out a runner at second to end the threat.


In the fourth South got a run with two outs as Abby Lorson reached on an error. Two batters later Cardone singled her in for a 2-0 lead.


In the bottom off the fifth Goodman hit a bloop to right and got to second out of it. She took third on a ground out, then home on wild pitch for the 3-0 lead.


This is where Troy was tripped up last year in districts, and they knew it was going to be difficult again.


“We knew we were going to have to play errorless ball against South, and we really did, we just had a couple little bobbles,” said Pratt. “We just couldn’t get that timely hit. A successful season, we continue to build our program, I expect to be right back here next year, hopefully we can turn the tables.”


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PHOTO CAPTION: Troy’s Sydnee Bellows looks to make contact…PHOTOS BY CHRIS MANNING



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