May 12, 2012
TC3 heads back to nationals
DRYDEN — The Tompkins Cortland Community College softball team won its fourth consecutive NJCAA Region III title Friday, sweeping past Monroe Community College.
The Panthers won the best-of-three Region III-B championship series on their home field with 12-5 and 10-2 victories on Friday, improving to 33-3 on the season and earning a return trip to the nationals. The second game was halted after five innings under the eight-run mercy rule.
The double-elimination NJCAA tournament opens up this coming Thursday, being hosted by Rochester in Minnesota. The Panthers will find out their first-round opponent when the tournament seeds are announced Monday.
TC3 pitcher Emilie Rogers was named most valuable player in the tournament, tossing both victories for the Panthers to improve her mound mark to 17-1. Teammates Emily Woodin and Kristan Baker named to the all-tournament team. Baker homered in both wins, while Woodin went 2-for-3 in each contest.
TC3 12, Monroe CC 5: In the opening win over Monroe CC (29-18), things got off to a shaky start for the hosts. In the top of the first, Monroe took advantage of a walk and two TC3 errors to score four times on just a lone base hit.
In the bottom of the inning, TC3 shortstop Tayler Fravel led off with a single and eventually came around to score on a double by catcher Samijo Scheer to make it 4-1. As TC3 pitcher Rogers settled in and set down Monroe in order in the second, third, and fourth innings, the Panthers’ offense got into a groove in the third.
Baker led off by reaching on an error, followed by a single by Scheer. Mackenzie Sherlock was hit by a pitch to load the bases with no outs, and a Karrie Snyder single brought in the first run of the inning. A Katie Huston groundball that was bobbled brought in another run and left the bases loaded for Chelsea Houtenbrink.
Houtenbrink came through in a big way, driving a pitch over the right field fence for a grand slam that gave TC3 a 7-4 lead. After a Woodin single, Fravel lifted a fly ball over the center field fence for a two-run homer and a 9-4 lead. One out later, Baker came up and hit TC3’s third homer of the inning, a solo shot to right to make it 10-4 after three innings.
TC3 added a run in the fourth on a Woodin sac fly to make it 11-4, but Monroe plated a run in the fifth to bring it to 11-5. Fravel drove in the last TC3 run in the sixth to make the final 12-5.
Rogers pitched the complete game, allowing just three hits while striking out 11. Fravel went 3-for-5 with three RBI, setting a new TC3 record for career hits along the way. Houtenbrink finished 2-for-4 with four RBI while Scheer, Huston, and Woodin each had two hits and one RBI.
Dominique Mantell had two of Monroe CC’s three hits.
TC3 10, Monroe CC 2: In game two the Panthers were playing as the visitors, and took advantage of the first at bat. Katie Ducharme started a big game with a one-out single and eventually came around to score on a pair of Monroe errors.
The 1-0 lead only lasted until the bottom of the frame when Monroe plated a run to tie the score. In the second the Panthers reclaimed the lead for good, again taking advantage of Monroe errors to score two runs and lead 3-1 in the second. In the third, Woodin came through with a two-out, two-run single to make it 5-1, and after a scoreless fourth, the Panthers blew it open in the fifth.
Snyder opened the frame with a double and Huston followed with a walk. An out later a Woodin ground out made it 6-1 with two down. Fravel and Ducharme each delivered RBI singles, and Baker followed with her second homer of the day, this one a three-run shot that made the score 10-1. Monroe scored a run in the bottom of the frame, but Rogers ended the game with a strike out of the Tribunes cleanup hitter.
Rogers picked up her second win of the day, striking out four in five innings. Ducharme went 3-for-4 with two RBI while Baker and Woodin each had two hits and three RBI.
Leadoff hitter Natasha Kersch went 2-for-3 to lead Monroe CC.
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