By MICHAEL LETENDRE
BRISTOL – The 2015 Bristol Girls Little League Softball city series championship was – perhaps – the most exciting tournament in recent memory, certainly had a competitive edge to it.
And the Pride had to defy all the odds, staving off elimination twice, to earn the championship trophy.
It certainly took some doing as the then undefeated Avalanche were in the pole position and needed just one win over the Pride on championship Friday on June 12 to claim the prized hardware.
But the Pride showed more than just pride against the Avalanche, picking up a 6-4 victory in game one to force a winner-take-all showdown under the lights – that same evening – from MaCabe-Waters Little League.
And in the championship tilt, the Pride won it all with an 8-3 win to earn the 2015 BGLLS city series championship.
Off the heels of that exciting play, the Bristol Observer will now unveil the 2015 BGLLS City Series All Tournament Team which is headlined by MVP Olivia Darby – the outstanding pitcher from the Pride:
Olivia Darby, Pride, Pitcher: Threw a five-hitter in the championship game, striking out four and walking only one in the championship effort…To get to the championship final, Darby also allowed just five hits in the Pride’s 6-4 win over the Avalanche to get into the final game…In that contest, she struck out five including three of the final four batters she faced…Deserves extreme credit for pitching both championship games as well as throwing 3.1 innings the day before against the Robins…In all, threw 15.1 innings in just over a twenty-four hour period to lead the Pride to victory…For the tournament, went 4-1 on the mound…Also did well at the plate in the final game, going 1-of-2 which included an RBI triple while walking twice and stealing a base…Smacked a two-run homer in a 15-5 elimination game against the pesky Robins while also doing the same versus the Robins on opening night of the city series.
Jenna Winters, Avalanche, Pitcher…Played extreme well on every front and nearly pitched her squad to the city series championship…Zipped up six strikeouts in the 8-3 loss to the Pride and totaled eight K’s on the day for the Avalanche…In the first game against the Pride on Wednesday, June 10, struck out the side in the second inning – earning seven strikeouts overall in the game – and overcame a four-run first inning to post a huge victory for her squad…Generated a huge two-RBI double in the first championship game against the Pride that chopped the deficit to 5-3 midway through the fifth inning…In the 9-6 victory over the Pride, zipped up two RBI singles and drew a base-on-balls, leading her squad to the championship round of the city series tournament.
Grace D’Amato, Pride, Catcher: Threw out a runner in the first game against the Robins and set the tone behind the plate at catcher for the Pride all series long…Drew two walks and scored twice the first time around against the Robins while generating two RBI and notched two runs in the 15-5 elimination victory over the Robins – leading the Pride to championship Friday…That Friday, D’Amato posted a total of five hits on the day and was an offensive menace on the day against the Avalanche…In the decisive victory against the Avalanche, “Motts” went 3-for-4 with a double, two singles and three runs scored for the champs.
Gwen Torreso, Pride, First Base: She certainly cleaned up in the clean-up position and even belted a home run when the need arose during series play…In the championship clinching victory, notched two hits and scored twice in the 8-3 win over the Avalanche…Also scooped up an RBI in the championship tilt…Went 3-for-3 in the elimination game against the Pride that included a neat two-RBI double to left and a stolen base…Just missed hitting the cycle against the Pride in the city series opening game against the Robins as Torreso unleashed a single, triple and an inside the park homer to centerfield – collecting four RBI on the day in the process.
Alexa Antonio, Avalanche, Shortstop: A big, defensive presence in the infield and certainly was one of the squad’s leaders out at shortstop…Mustered up two hits in three at-bats in the championship final while also walking and beating out a hit to third base on the final day of the city series…Overall, went 3-for-5 on Championship Friday…In the Avalanche’s lone victory over the Pride, went a crisp 1-for-1 with a hit, an RBI, and three base-on-balls from the third slot in the batting order.
Ashlynn Brunet, Avalanche, Third Base: The feisty infielder was also a solid force in the infield and displayed a strong arm at third base…Brunet was 1-for-3 in the championship finale while scoring two runs for her squad…In the first contest on championship Friday, she went 2-for-3 with a run scored, an RBI and a stolen base to her credit…In the first contest against the Pride, her fourth inning, RBI fielder’s choice put the Avalanche ahead for good in the game at 6-5.
Leah Chipman, Pride, Second Base: Chipman was the master of the groundout RBI and each time she notched one, the runner that scored loomed big on the scoreboard for the Pride…In the final game of the series, Chipman went 2-for-4 with an RBI single and an RBI groundout to pace the Pride to the championship…And in the 6-4 win to get the Pride to the championship tilt, Chipman had – guess what – two RBI groundouts in that huge two-run victory…Overall, she generated four RBI against the Avalanche in the championship round out of the sixth-hole of the Pride’s line-up…And in the first game against the Avalanche, executed a perfect suicide squeeze to score a run – at that time giving the Pride the edge in the contest at 5-4.
Carol Sugrue, Robins, Pitcher: Another one of those mighty-mites on the field, Sugrue simply never quit and never gave in when the chips were down…Came in to win that wacky 20-19 victory over the pesky Bandits and certainly was a handful from the plate that day…Made six official plate appearances against the Bandits and went 3-for-5 with a walk, three runs scored and even scooped up an RBI…Very solid from the leadoff position in the batting order for the Robins…Against the Pride the second time around, went 1-for-2 against some serious pitching, generating an RBI single, a walk and eventually, scoring a run for her squad…Tough pitcher on the mound as well.
Zoe Lowe, Shortstop, Pride: Another defensive guru that seemingly was everywhere around the infield for the Pride…A spitfire from the leadoff position in the batting order, she scooped up everything in sight…Went 1-for-4 in the championship game, scored a run and stole two bases…Also zipped up a single and stole a base in the first game against the Avalanche on Championship Friday…In a elimination contest versus the Robins, posted two hits – including a double down the left field line – while scoring three times in the 15-5 victory…And in the Pride’s first game against the Robins, Lowe had her biggest afternoon of the tournament, going 3-for-4 with several infield hits, stole four bases, notched a run and caused general havoc on the field.
McKenzie Monroe, Bandits: When the Bandits played the Robins on the second day of the city series championship, the game was a wild and wooly affair in which everybody get involved offensively…Credit belonged to Monroe who came in and certainly shook-up the line-up for the Bandits…Monroe went 2-of-4 on the day with a huge three-RBI double up the middle leading to one of the biggest hits of the evening.
Bristol Girls Little League Softball Tournament Breakdown: Double Elimination Format
Date Score Notes
Monday, June 8 Pride 14, Robins 2 (4) Pride moved to winner’s bracket
Monday, June 8 Avalanche 20, Bandits 4 Avalanche moved to winner’s bracket
Tuesday, June 9 Robins 20, Bandits 19 Bandits were eliminated
Wednesday, June 10 Avalanche 9, Pride 6 Avalanche advanced to championship
Thursday, June 11 Pride 15, Robins 5 (4) Pride advanced to championship
Championship Friday: Pride had to win both games to claim the championship
Date Score Notes
Friday, June 12 Pride 6, Avalanche 4 Pride moved to winner-take-all game
Friday, June 12 Pride 8, Avalanche 3 Pride wins city series championship
City Series Team Records:
BGLLS City Series Past Champions
2015 Bristol Observer BGLLS City Series All Tournament Team:
Most Valuable Player: Olivia Darby, Pride, Pitcher
Jenna Winters, Avalanche, Pitcher
Grace D’Amato, Pride, Catcher
Gwen Torreso, Pride, First Base
Alexa Antonio, Avalanche, Shortstop
Ashlynn Brunet, Avalance, Third Base
Leah Chipman, Pride, Second Base
Carol Sugrue, Robins, Pitcher
Zoe Lowe, Shortstop, Pride
McKenzie Monroe, Bandits