By Peter McCarthy and Chris LaMonica
DHAA Angels 9 St. Anselm 2
The Dust Bowl was rocking this past Wednesday when the St. Bernadette Knights’ Angels took on the team from St. Anselm in the St. Anselm League Junior Varsity championship game.
In the first inning, the St. Anselm squad had a runner on second base with one out, but could not bring her in as Kayla Hankash struck out the next two batters she faced. The Angels went down in order in the bottom of the first inning.
In the top of the second inning, Hankash struck out two more batters to get out of the inning. In the bottom of the frame, the Angels scored two runs. The first one came when Hankash singled and stole second, Anna Boylan singled, Marissa Sparacio walked and Alexandra Vittiburga walked to score a run. Then Alyssa Martin walked and Sophia Pedernera drove in the second run on a well-hit ball.
St. Anselm threatened in the top of the third inning, with runners at second and third base, but again the Angels’ defense was able to get the third out. In the bottom of the third inning, the Angels added three more runs when Bianca Cannata, Nina Amatore and Hankash all walked, then Boylan walked to drive in a run, Sparacio walked to drive in another and Brooke Signorile singled to drive in the third.
Boylan came in to pitch in the fourth inning for the Angels and struck out two batters to get out of the inning. In the top of the fifth inning, Amatore made two nice plays at shortstop to get the first two outs against St. Anselm team and then Boylan got the third out on a grounder right back to the pitcher.
In the top of the sixth inning, St. Anselm scored two runs on three clutch hits. In the bottom of the sixth, the Angels scored four runs. Boylan hit a home run to start off the inning, then Sparacio walked and Signorile knocked her in with a double up the middle. Vittiburga, Alyssa Martin, Stephanie Maisonett and Jessica Smalley all walked to score another run, then Cannata walked to score the fourth run of the inning.
Trailing by a margin of 9-2, St. Anselm led off the seventh inning with a triple, but the next batter hit a ground ball to Amatore at short that allowed her to hold the runner and throw to first to get the out. The Angels were able to get two more strikeouts to win the game and the championship.