Paced by Chelsea Marriott’s muscle, Hickory High hammered 4 home runs Saturday afternoon en route to a 19-1 rout of Sharon.
At Wengler, Marriott mauled 2- and 3-run round-trippers to right-center and straightaway center field, respectively. Her Lady Hornets’ teammates Hannah Gallagher and Morgan McBride mustered 3-run bombs, also.
Hickory had 18 hits during the abbreviated, 5-inning affair, while winning pitcher Megan Chess checked Sharon on 1 run in 4 frames.
The Lady Hornets held a 2-1 lead after the 2nd stanza, but erupted for a half-dozen runs in the 4th frame and 9 more in the 5th.
“They’ve actually come out very strong this year,” Hickory Head Coach Tanya McClafferty said in praise of her Lady Hornets’ hitting. “The past couple years they’ve been excellent, excellent hitters; they just weren’t sure of themselves. This year we’re just trying to work on confidence. Confidence is the key offensively.
“This year ... in this area we have such a fluctuation of pitchers,” McClafferty mused. “We have some with some speed, then we drop down a little bit, and it’s tough for the girls to adjust.
“We went south about three weeks ago and saw two good teams (Gaffney, S.C. and Waxsaw, N.C.) that had pitchers that threw very hard,” McClafferty continued. “We wound up ready to rock ’n roll, but it’s hard to adjust. But once we got goin’ into this season, we’ll try to keep it rollin.’”
Marriott mustered 4 hits including a double for Hickory (2-1 region, 3-1 overall), as did Maddie Collier, Sabrina Black and McBride, while Gallagher garnered 2, as did Alyssa Kostka. Mikhaila Layshock lent a double and scored 3 runs, as did Leslie Gargano, while Gallagher and Collier each tallied twice.
For Sharon (1-2, 1-5), Kristina Jacoway turned in a 3-for3 plate performance that included a run-scoring, double to right-center in the 1st frame. Mallory Torr and Danielle Steiner stroked safeties for Lady Tigers’ taskmaster Chad McComb, also.
Southpaw Chess fanned 4 and walked 2, while Black retired Sharon on only 4 pitches in a scoreless inning of relief.
“Megan just started pitching again, about four weeks ago,” McClafferty related. “She’s back in her groove, she’s throwing strong, hitting her spots, throwing good pitches. She settled in after the first (inning) and didn’t stop after that.”
Regarding th rugged winter weather, followed by the rainy spring, McClafferty said, “Thank God, we’re finally gettin’ on dirt.” — By Ed Farrell, Herald assistant sports editor.
ä Wilmington 14, Kennedy Catholic 0 (5 inn.) — At Hermitage, Kayleigh Shenker fired a complete-game 1-hitter with 6 strikeouts and 2 walks in leading 2nd-year Coach Tom Reed’s Lady Hounds (5-0) past KC.
Shenker helped her cause at the plate with a bases-loaded triple and a single. Also, Courtney Cohen doubled, singled and drove in 3 runs, Cassidy Marett ripped a pair of singles and Chelsea Rogel doubled.
Emilee Taylor went the distance for the Lady Golden Eagles. She struck out 3 batters, walked 2 and gave up 9 hits.
Amanda Natale had the lone hit for KC, a single in the 1st inning.
ä Reynolds 6, Sharon 2 — At Johnny Pepe Field, the visiting Raiders erupted for a game-deciding 4-run 6th stanza for Coach Bob Foust in the Region 2-AA affair.
To start the 6th Jacob Reimold, Jake Mahlon and Collin Yake yanked consecutive singles off Tigers’ twirler Dan Vanderslice — the latter producing the go-ahead run. Following Trey Vigus’ sacrifice bunt, on Dan Vanderslice’s 1st pitch lefthanded-hitting Brandon Blair lined a 2-run single down the right-field line. Jake Leipheimer lent another run-scoring single for insurance.
The game was scoreless through 3 innings. The Raiders (3-1, region, 4-2 overall) took 1-run leads in the 4th and 5th before the Tigers (1-2, 2-3) twice tied it.
Sharon squared the slate at 1 in the 4th on Joey Rahn’s sac fly. But Adam Ballish’s 2-out single and subsequent steal set up Leipheimer’s liner to right-center as Reynolds rallied for a 2-1 lead.
Sharon, on the short end entering the home 5th, knotted the count in spite of base-running gaffe. Nick McClimans muscled a lead-off double to left, but was picked off by Reynolds pitcher Nick Fuchs.
But Jon Williams singled through the 5-hole, stole 2nd, continued to 3rd on an errant throw by backstop Yake, then scored on Fuchs’ wild pitch enabling the Tigers to tie it at 2.
A pair of right-handers, both Fuchs and Vanderslice went the distance. Fuchs retired 7 of the last 8 hitters he faced. He walked McClimans with 1 out in the 7th, but silenced Sharon’s last hopes.
TRACK & FIELD
Harbor Creek Invitational
The Sharon High squads competed at the Harbor Creek Invite on Saturday. No team scores were reported.
Carnell Hawkins took 1st place in the 100-meter dash (11.2) while the girls 1600 relay team of Leona Bell, Zhanea Davis, Jessica Talbert-Kirsch and Xsila Powell set a meet record of 4:13.79 (old mark 4:18.05).
Also for the Sharon boys, the 400 relay team (Curtis Seay, Tim Thompson, Trenton Mosley and Hawkins) placed 3rd in 46.66, Scott Greenawalt took 5th in the 3200 (11:29.72) and Thompson was 5th in both the 200 (24.1) and 400 (52.5).
For the girls, the 400 relay team of Bell, Talbert-Kirsch, Davis and Ra’kiya Rice) was 3rd in 52.14, Powell was 3rd in the 400 (1:01.74), Rice was 4th in the 200 (27.65), the 3200 relay team placed 4th in 10:49.20 (Powell, Davis, Tiaja Thompson and Talbert-Kirsch), Bell finished 5th in the 200 (27.97) and Talbert-Kirsch was 7th in the 800 (2:30.40).
West Middlesex girls finished 5th overall on Friday and the boys were 8th at the Union Scottie Invitational.
Wilmington won the girls team title with 158 points, followed by Mohawk (105), Shenango (77), New Castle (67) and WM (58).
Sarah Lucich placed 1st in the javelin (111-7) and Kristen White won the 1600 in 5:36.2. White was 2nd in the 800 (2:33.6) while Chloe Tyillian placed 3rd in the mile (5:45.7) and Lucich took 3rd in the discus (88-7). Sophia Kachulis earned a pair of 4th-place finishes in the 800 (2:38.8) and 1600 (5:46.1).
Fifth-place finishes went to the 1600 relay team of Mia Perilli, Alyson Pierce, Jordan Pape and White in 4:29.4, the 3200 relay team (10:46.7) of Tyillian, Kachulis, Madison Weimer and Anna Zrile and Pierce in the 100 (13.7) and 400 (1:04.9). Pierce also placed 6th in the 200-meter dash (28.9).
New Castle (137) captured the boys team title, followed by Wilmington (116), Mohawk (81), Moniteau (48) and Laurel (46). WM was 8th with 24 points.
Isaac Williams placed 3rd in the 1600 (4:48.6) and Eric Lucich was 3rd in the pole vault (11-6).
Fifth-place WM finishes were Williams in the 800 (2:09.2), Tanner Powell in the 110 hurdles (17.5) and the 400 (47.1) and 1600 (3:46.7) relay teams. The foursome in the 400 was Powell, Todd Fabian, Chandler Tyillian and Lucich) and the 1600 squad was Doug Brennan, Williams, Brett Kirk and Powell.
Sixth-place finishes were registered by the 3200 relay team (10:36.3) of David Johnson, John Devlin, Payton Pierce and Levi Canon), Johnson in the 3200-meter run (11:00.1), Luke Hemminger in the 110 hurdles (17.7) and Powell in the 300 hurdles (46.6).
Paced by Chelsea Marriott’s muscle, Hickory High hammered 4 home runs Saturday afternoon en route to a 19-1 rout of Sharon.
NFL NOTEBOOK: Ex-Sharon star Austin hopes to spark Lions' defense
THE TALENTED — albeit underachieving — Detroit Lions commence camp July 27 in Allen Park, Mich. as the National Football League prepares for the 2014 season.
Racing to fight cancer
Former Hickory High athlete Amanda Budzowski is on the run — the run to raise money to fight cancer.
Budzowski is part of Team in Training, an organization that has raised more than $1.4 billion for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society since forming in 1988. Her division is known as IRONTEAM and she is currently training for the 140.6-mile Ironman triathlon in Mont Tremblant, Canada, in August.
SPORTVIEW: Pirates, Indians need fast start after All-Star break
SO FAR, so good. I’m referring to the start of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cleveland Indians after the All-Star break on Friday night.
Both teams rallied to win. The Buccos beat the Colorado Joints — err, I mean Rockies — by coming from behind in the 8th inning. Since they legalized marijuana sales in that state, it gave new meaning to John Denver’s song “Rocky Mountain High.”
Rutters earn spot in national motocross event
The brother-sister racing duo of Elijah and Dannah Rutter of Mercer are set to travel to Hurricane Mills, Tenn., to compete soon in the prestigious 33rd annual Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championships presented by AMSOIL at Loretta Lynn Ranch.
Elijah, 18, and Dannah, 16, earned a ticket to the event with their performances at qualifiers and then regionals and are among the top 5 percent of riders in the U.S. Overall, 20,000 hopefuls from across the U.S. competed and there are only 1,446 qualifying spots at nationals.
Notebook: Sharon football greats meet, reunite at inaugural golf scramble
Mid-July, with the temperature 80-plus degrees at Avalon at Buhl Country Club; however, it felt like a fall, football Friday.
The inaugural Sharon Football Boosters 4-man golf scramble took place recently, and served as a Who’s Who in the Tigers’ triumphant tradition.
SPORTVIEW: All is right with the world - LeBron has come home!
HAPPY DAYS are here again. The prodigal child has returned!
The announcement that “King James” is returning to Cleveland has created a level of euphoria not seen since the Browns won the city’s last major sport championship a couple of years ago.
What’s that? Oh, yeah — make that 50 years ago (1964).
Full text of LeBron's essay in SI
LeBron James announced his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday in an essay that he wrote for Sports Illustrated. The following is the full text of that essay.
Snyder, Gordon, Popatak named to All-State team
Grove City High’s David Gordon, Sharpsville’s Greg Popatak and Lakeview’s Logan Snyder recently were named to the Pennsylvania High School Baseball Coaches Association all-state team.
Synder was selected 1st-Team in Class A as a designated-hitter, while Gordon was honorably-mentioned in Class AAA and Popatak similarly was honored in AA. Gordon gained his laurels as a pitcher; Popatak as a 3rd baseman.
Oprah lands first interview with Jerry Sandusky's adopted son, Matthew
Matthew Sandusky, the adopted son of former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, is breaking his silence for the first time since his father's 2012 conviction on 45 counts of child sexual abuse, sitting down with Oprah to tell his story.
Little League Tournaments
Sharon won the District 2 Major Division (12-year-olds) Championship, while Greenville 9-10 and West Middlesex 11 teams notched tournament victories in recent action.
Hermitage Brennan Chiropractic won the Mercer County 14-under championship recently.
Following are game reports:
The First Tee of Sharon celebrates 15th anniversary
Professional golf star John Cook has received many honors and awards in his illustrious career, but probably none mean as much as those similar to the one he received Monday afternoon at The First Tee of Sharon.
During a special ceremony to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the local program, a permanent plaque was unveiled in his honor describing the contributions he has made to junior golf.
SPORTVIEW: John Cook here Monday for First Tee; other celebs on July 11
THE RETURN of Tiger Woods to a PGA event sparked a lot of interest this past week. The return of John Cook to Buhl Farm Golf Course Monday will do the same locally.
Cook, a standout on the Champions Tour and outstanding TV golf analyst, will conduct a clinic at 11 a.m. Monday at the course to help celebrate the 15th anniversary of The First Tee of Sharon program.
It is open to the public at no charge.
Hickory honors Tri-Athletes
Hickory High honored its 2013-14 tri-athletes in a recent ceremony, the latest installment in a program that began in 2003-04.
Fifty student-athletes (grades 9-12) were cited for having competed in at least one sport in the fall, winter and spring while maintaining a minimum B (85 percent) grade-point-average during the first three 9-week grading periods of the academic year.
SPORTVIEW: Ex-Greenville man to enter Bedford County Hall
HUGHEY TATE was the greatest baseball player that ever lived — hitting 10,000 home runs and never making an out in 50 years on the diamond.
OK, that’s not true of course. But that’s the way Hughey would have told it before bursting into laughter.
Tate, a Greenville man who was as good at spinning a yarn as well as he was in hitting home runs, will be inducted posthumously into the Bedford County (Pa.) Hall of Fame Saturday. Some of his relatives from this area will attend the ceremonies.
Wilson wins Herald-Tamie Jr. golf crown
It was a case of family history trumping golfing history!
Hickory High golfer Billy Colbert had a chance to become only the second player ever to win the Herald-Tam O’Shanter Golf Championship four times. But he missed the final round of the tourney Wednesday along with his brother Colbert to attend his great-grandma’s funeral in Pittsburgh.
“I kind of wish he was here,” said the 2014 champion Jacob Wilson, a Kennedy Catholic High player who lost in a sudden-death playoff to Colbert last year. “But you play whoever is here. And in golf, you play against yourself too.”
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