By MICHAEL LETENDRE
PLAINVILLE – The Bristol Central softball team is, frankly, playing out of this world right now and on Friday, May 17, Plainville was in the Rams’ collective sights.
And while Central didn’t play its A-game, the Rams still smashed the Blue Devils 17-3 in a CCC South clash from Alumni Field in Plainville.
The squad from Bristol, riding a 13-game winning streak, blasted Plainville for 18 hits in the game and gave the Blue Devils’ defense plenty of heartburn.
But mental mistakes and gaffes kept the Rams from possibly scoring additional runs and ending the game a bit earlier than it actually did.
“I was actually a little bit disappointed with the way that we played,” said Central coach Nicole Shook. “Mentally, I think we need to refocus a little bit but we did make some great plays as well.”
Offensively, Central certainly moved the ball around the field.
Chandler Walker led the hit parade with a solo home run while going 3-for-5 overall with an RBI and a stolen base while freshman Sam Laviero was sensational at the nine-spot as she went 3-of-5 with two RBI and three runs scored.
Jodi DiSanto went 2-of-3 with a triple, three RBI, and a run scored. Olivia Banulski was 2-for-5 with a run scored and scooped up an RBI.
Katie Curry went 2-of-3 with two singles and an RBI while Lindsay Holden added a single, a double, and two RBI in the winning effort.
Allie Martel, Katy Curry, and Jess Gallant all played well in the winning effort.
“We did hit the ball well today,” said Shook. “But again, there were miscues on base running.”
Cheyenne Dalke led the way for Plainville with two singles, a double, and an RBI while teammate Rachel Lancaster was 2-of-4 with an RBI.
Sarah Ercoli tallied two hits while Danielle Angelillo and Arielle Lozefski also had hits in the game for the Blue Devils.
Bristol Central pitcher Ileish Burney went the distance and gave up just three runs off 10 hits while striking out four and walking only one to move to 16-2 on the campaign.
For Plainville, Rachel Lancaster had a rough outing but showed real grit after being relieved to start the fourth frame.
Lancaster was reinserted back on the mound at the end of the fourth and only gave up four hits and no runs the rest of the way.
Defense fueled the game for the Rams and in the fifth frame, Central proved that very fact.
With one out, Central right fielder Rachel Jurzyk ran down a fly ball from Lancaster for out number two of the inning.
Angelillo – holding on third base – broke for home but off a beautiful thrown from the outfield, she was tagged out at the plate to end the stanza with a big double play.
“Rachel really made a good throw,” said Shook of Jurzyk. “She came up throwing right and that was important. The kids instinctively know what to do with the ball and it’s really good going into the postseason.”
Off a scoreless first inning, Central tagged Plainville for four runs as Walker’s home run, an RBI tally by Laviero, and double from Banulski – along with a passed ball – and the Rams wrapped up an early 4-0 lead after two frames.
Central struck for nine runs in the third, highlighted by a two-RBI double from Linsey Holden, as the Rams led by a commanding 13-0 push.
In the bottom of the third, the Blue Devils posted three runs as RBI tallies by Dalke, Lancaster, and Nicole Basile cut the deficit to 10 at 13-3.
But Central notched four additional runs in the top of the fourth as the Rams zipped up a commanding 17-3 edge and never looked back.
“It’s really important (to keep the momentum going),” said Shook. “And it’s important going into Monday’s game (against Bristol Eastern) as well.”
By MICHAEL LETENDRE