The Pierson and Port Jefferson softball teams resumed play on Wednesday in the Suffolk County Class C best-of-three championship series, after the game on Tuesday was suspended due to rain. With the game tied at 1-1 in the top of the seventh inning, the Lady Royals rallied for a run to win the first game, 2-1, but the Lady Whalers turned things around to take game two, 6-1.
Pierson will host Port Jeff in the third and deciding game of the series on Thursday at 3 p.m. The champion will advance to the regional finals on June 5 against a school that has yet to be determined and at a site and time that has yet to be determined.
Port Jeff loaded the bases in the top of the seventh of game one. Danielle Grier hit a double passed an outstretched glove of Pierson right fielder Alyssa Kneeland, but just one run scored on the hit thanks to a nicely executed relay throw by Pierson and a nice tag at the plate by catcher Julia Schiavoni on Port Jeff’s Melanie Dambeck.
Pierson got a runner to second base in the bottom of the seventh, but Port Jeff pitcher Melissa Darling struck out Kasey Gilbride to end the game. Darling struck out 14 batters in game one to earn the victory for her team.
The Lady Whalers showed some quick resiliency in game two though. Just 15 minutes after game one, Sam Duchemin hit a two-run triple to deep left field in the top of the first inning to give her team an early 2-0 lead. Duchemin was brought home on a hard hit ground out to shortstop by Schiavoni. Port Jeff tacked on a run in the bottom of the first but Pierson still led 3-1.
Pierson scored single runs in the second, third and sixth innings. Gilbride and Lottie Evans both finished the game 2 for 4 with a run scored. Isabel Peters went 2 for 3 with a double and a run and Duchemin finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs. She also pitched the entire game and only allowed one unearned run on two hits.