ROME — Good teams can win in several different ways.
Wednesday at Kost Softball Complex, the Oriskany Redskins got some timely hits, took advantage of some RFA errors and used some small-ball tactics to put up six runs in the fourth inning en route to a 6-2 victory.
Junior pitcher Angelina Hays scattered five hits in a complete-game victory, striking out three as the Redskins (5-1) bounced back from Tuesday’s 4-0 defeat at West Canada Valley. Hays also had two hits, including an RBI double to knot the score for Oriskany.
“I tried to throw as hard as I could and hit my spots the best I could,” Hays said.
All-star catcher Maddelyn Hoehn, who had two hits, thought her pitcher was on point throughout the victory.
“I think it was location and following the game plan,” Hoehn said of Hays. “She hit her spots really well today.”
The Black Knights (1-4) got on the board first with a two-out rally in the bottom of the second. Kaylei Wood, who scored both of RFA’s runs, got things started with a single to right, then took second on a ball in the dirt. First basemen Madison Diehl, who had three of RFA’s five hits, and both RBIs, rocketed a shot that tipped off Aeron Hamm’s glove at first base and into the outfield as Wood raced to the plate to give the home team their only lead of the game.
RFA ptcher Laina Beer kept Oriskany’s lineup off balance throughout the majority of the game, allowng just eight hits and three earned runs, but the dam broke in the top of the fourth as three hits, three errors and some well-executed sacrifices broke the game open for Oriskany.
“Our pitcher did a great job today,” RFA head coach Mike Deraway said. “If you take away all the errors, it’s probably a 3-2 game.”
After Sofia Tagliaferri reached on an error, Hays ripped an RBI double to left-center to knot the score. Courtney Donahue followed with a sacrifice bunt and was safe as the throw was wide. Abby Edsall then loaded the bases with a bunt single and Juliet Tagliaferri’s infield hit drove in Hays with the go-ahead run.
Matteson Hoehn then roped a liner to left that was dropped and two more runners scored to make it 4-1. An RBI-groundout by Hamm and a sacrifice fly by Phelan Shannon made it 6-1 before the Knights could get out of the inning.
“Today we strung hits together and executed a bunt and a sacrifice fly when we needed to and had one big inning,” Oriskany head coach Mike Reilly said. “We scored six runs in that inning. The bottom of the order started it and we strung some hits together and the top of the order drove them in.”
Hays allowed just one base runner in each of the fourth and fifth innings, before RFA put some good at-bats together in the sixth as Diehl singled home Wood to close the gap to four runs. Beer then drew a walk to put two runners on for dangerous leadoff hitter Olivia Guy.
However, Hays stuck to her game plan and jammed Guy into a weak groundout to first to end the rally.
“You can’t say enough about Angelina and Maddelyn,” Reilly said of his battery. “Angelina hit her spots and
Maddelyn controls the whole game behind there. This team is very close. They’re loose the whole game. Even last night when we were losing, they’re loose and stay behind each other.”
Hays closed out the win despite good at-bats by RFA’s Brianna Kelley and Megan Magnanti. Kelley lined out to Matteson Hoehn at short for the second out and Abby Edsall charged in to corall Magnanti’s liner to left to cap the Redskins’ victory.
“Offensively we cannot string enough hits together and we’re leaving people on base,” Deraway said. “If you combine that with the errors … you’re not going to win too many games at the varsity level.”
Despite the six errors, there were some great defensive plays by the Knights. Most notably, a diving snow-cone snag by third basemen Elana Calicchia, that robbed Maddelyn Hoehn of a third hit.
Both teams return to action Tuesday. Oriskany has a difficult road game at Poland, while RFA hosts West Genesee.
Note: Both Hoehn sisters will be playing softball next season at MVCC.
Oriskany 6, RFA 2
Oriskany 000 600 0–6 8 2
RFA 010 001 0–2 5 6
W: Angelina Hays. L: Laina Beer. 2B: Oriskany, Hays.
Records: Oriskany 5-1; RFA 1-4.
Nick Sardina is a writer for midyorksportsreport.com. Follow Nick onTwitter @nsardinamysr or on Facebook. Contact him via email at email@example.com