May 7, 2010


Solid Trojans thump Tigers

SoftballBob Ellis/staff photographer
Morgan VanGorder of Cortland reaches for a late throw as Homer’s Gabby Luety makes it safely into third with a triple Thursday at Meldrim Field. Luety hit two triples in Homer’s victory.

Staff Writer

It’s safe to say that Cris Colasurdo is happy with her Homer Central softball squad.
“This is one of the better well-rounded teams I’ve had with hitting, pitching and defense,” the Trojans’ 10-year head coach said, her team having shone in all three areas in a 13-4 romp over Cortland High Thursday afternoon at Meldrim Field.
“Because of depth, this is a very solid fielding team,” she added. “Everyone knows where to throw the ball, and they back each other up. The outfielders are moving on every play, and are sharp on the little things.”
Homer, the league-leader at 9-1 and now 11-2 overall, was strong at the plate, too, banging out 13 hits, including a pair of triples by senior catcher Gabby Luety and a double by senior centerfielder Ashley Crossway — the only extra-base knocks in the game.
Crossway (two RBIs, two runs scored) and junior rightfielder Carissa Cornwell (three RBIs, two runs) both went 3-for-4 to set the pace, while Luety (RBI and two runs along with the two triples), sophomore shortstop Jessica Parmiter (RBI, three runs) and sophomore second baseman Alyssa Morgan (RBI, run) all went 2-for-5 for the winners.
Senior Alexis Brown pitched the first three innings for the visitors, allowing two runs, neither of them earned, and leaving with a 9-2 lead. Classmate Cayla Hartnett got the win, throwing the final four innings, the first three in perfect fashion, before giving up two hits and two runs, one earned, in the seventh.
For the Purple Tigers (2-8, 2-9), the loss only added to some recent frustration, on the heels of a 5-1 setback at Fulton the day before.
“We led Fulton 7-3 in the seventh the first time we played them but ended up losing,” CHS coach Lara Almansberger said of a 9-5 loss. “The girls were pumped for yesterday’s game, and might have been a little deflated and tired today, but still ready to go.
“We’ve struggled all season long offensively and defensively, working to come back in almost every game. The girls have the attitude that they can win every game. They keep working, but different things don’t fall into place. They have to put everything together at the same time.”
THE TROJANS didn’t waste any time in establishing control, scoring five runs in the first inning and never looking back.
Morgan led off with an infield single and scored on a triple to right by Luety, who held third as Parmiter beat out a bunt single and then scored as Parmiter stole second and the throw went into the outfield. Sophomore third baseman Katie Sinclair singled to left and Crossway walked to load the bases before a fielder’s choice by Cornwell scored Parmiter and Sinclair came home on a sacrifice fly by Hartquist.
Cortland came back with two runs in the bottom of the first. Senior shortstop Aubrey VanGorder reached base on an error, stole second and went to third on a single to left by senior catcher Lisa Dovi, who took second on the throw to third. A sacrifice fly to left by Cortland starter Maggie Reagan, who took the mound loss, scored VanGorder, and Dovi scored on another error.
Homer added three more runs in the second. Parmiter reached base on a two-out error and, after Sinclair walked, Crossway doubled to left to drive home Parmiter. Cornwell then collected two more RBIs with a single to center. The Trojans added another run in the fourth on an RBI single to right by Crossway, and Hartnett came on in relief of Brown in the bottom of that inning.
“I was going to do that no matter what,” Colasurdo said of the pitching change, noting that the big lead played no part on the decision. “Cayla’s been doing well, and I wanted to let Alexis rest after getting in some work. Our pitching depth allows us many options.
“I wasn’t sure I was going to pitch,” said Hartnett, who started the game at first base, but Alexis’s shoulder was a little sore so I thought I might. I used a lot of fastballs with a few changeups, because I didn’t have much time to warm up and didn’t use a catcher to do it. Having the lead definitely helped, and gave me more confidence.
“Our team works really well together, and Cortland always comes right at us. we’re always up for them.”
Luety tripled to center with two outs and scored on an infield single by Parmiter in the fifth, and Homer closed out its scoring with three more runs in the sixth to greet Foster. Crossway scored the first one on an alert play, coming all the way around from second on a bunt single right down the first-base line by junior left-fielder Alyssa Smith on which no one covered home. Cornwell, who had beaten out an infield single, scored on a groundout and Morgan later singled to center to score Smith.
“IT WAS JUST a case of timing the pitches,” Cornwell said of her productive day at the plate. “We’ve been seeing faster pitchers, so I had to adjust a little and move up in the batter’s box. It felt great to get the lead early, but we let up and shouldn’t have. Everyone on this team likes each other; we have each other’s backs.”
As noted, Hartnett dominated Cortland’s hitters in perfect fashion over her first three innings, getting five infield popouts, three groundouts and a strikeout. The hosts finally reached her in the seventh, the game already long settled.
Junior leftfielder Alyssa Cafararo reached base on a one-out error and went to second on a widl pitch, then scored as VanGorder singled to center and took second on the throw home. Senior first baseman Erica Turco then singled to right-center to score VanGorder, but Hartnett then snagged a hard liner by Dovi and threw to junior first baseman Ashley Barnard to double Dovi off and end the game.
“We’ve struggled all season long offensively and defensively, working to come back in almost every game,” Almansberger said, her team now off until a Monday contest against Jamesville-DeWitt, starting at 4:30 p.m. at Meldrim. “The girls have the attitude that they can win every game; they keep working, but different things don’t fall into place. at this point we’re waiting for the time they break one open as their ability comes through; they just have to put everything together at the same time.”
“We came out on fire, able to hit to the gaps and build some momentum,” said Colasurdo, whose team was slated for a huge game today at second-place Syracuse CBA, which is in second at 7-2 league, a game back of the Trojans. “There were a couple of times today that the girls could have gotten frustrated, but they found a way to help each other out.”
CORTLAND JVs tied the game with a run in the top of the seventh, scored twice in the top of the eighth and held on for a 6-5 win over host Homer. After Jenna Gregory scored to tie the game in the seventh, Maria Speranza doubled home both eighth-inning runs, then made a catch in the bottom of the inning, as did Amanda Edwards, to help seal the win.
Hannah Franceschelli scored three runs for the Purple Tigers, who are now 6-1, while Liz Torti earned the complete-game mound win, chalking up seven strikeouts.