Two days after suffering a heartbreaking extra-innings 3-2 loss to Kings Park, the Eastport South Manor softball team proved its mettle by rallying for a 13-1 rout of then league-leader Hauppauge on Monday.
With the win, the top of League III has Half Hollow Hills West and ESM with 14-3 records, Hauppauge at 13-3, and Kings Park at 14-4 going into the final week of the season.
“They are very resilient,” ESM head coach Laura Ward said of her team. “They have such a nice chemistry with each other. It’s a winning combination. When it comes down to it, they work as a team should. They really worked hard and they pick each other up. The Kings Park game was a heartbreaking loss and we had a couple of opportunities that just didn’t pan out. Instead of that being a turning point to fall apart, they dug deep and figured out a way to win. You can’t take Hauppauge lightly. They are a super power on offense, and we came away with a big win.”
ESM trailed 1-0 after the first inning against Hauppauge but the Lady Eagles wouldn’t enjoy their lead for long as the Lady Sharks broke out for eight runs in the bottom of the second inning en route to putting the visitors away in just five innings due to the mercy rule.
Marissa Rizzi held Hauppauge to just two hits, struck out two and didn’t allow a walk. ESM totaled 13 hits as a team and every batter in the lineup had at least one hit, led by three hits in three trips to the plate for Jackie Chester, who also had four RBIs and a run scored. Amanda Rose went 2 for 3 with a pair of runs and one RBI while Nina Gaita was 2 for 3 with three runs scored and an RBI.
Prior to the rout of Hauppauge, the Lady Sharks dropped a heartbreaking loss in eight innings to Kings Park at home on May 3.
Paige Julich gave Kings Park a 2-0 lead in the top of the first with a two-run home run over the fence in left center.
ESM scored once in the bottom of the second on a Hope Brenkert triple and then evened the score at 2-2 in the bottom of the fourth when Kailah Konkel scored on a Chester sac fly.
The score remained locked in a tie until the top of the eighth when Arianna Ambrosio knocked in the go-ahead run for Kings Park with a double and the Lady Sharks were unable to plate any runs in the bottom half of the inning.