WORCESTER — The Lynn Senior Little League Softball All-Stars split their weekend games in the East Regional round.
The Lynners kicked the tournament off on a sour note, dropping their first game, 9-4, to Connecticut. Lynn bounced back to steer the ship in the right direction with a 10-0 win over Rhode Island Sunday. Both games were played at Vernon Hill Park.
The win Sunday saw each Lynn starting player log a hit. The offense was led by a 2-for-2 performance from Kaelyn Jennings, who scored twice and added 2 RBI. Jenna Tobin went 1-for-2 with 2 RBI and scored twice. Lily Newhall scored a run and went 1-for-3 with 1 RBI. Amanda Tobin went 1-for-1 with 1 RBI and scored a run.
“The whole starting order had a hit in this game,” Lynn manager Chad Wilkins said. “That was great for us to see after we didn’t hit the ball too well Saturday.”
Jenna Tobin split the pitching duties with Lily Newhall, as they also did in the opening game Saturday. Tobin went the first four inning and Newhall threw three innings of relief. Both pitchers brought their best in combining for the shutout.
Abby Fila led the defense with four putouts at third base.
“Defensively, Fila had four putouts and she played well defensively,” Wilkins said. “We had another pretty perfect game defensively. Pitching and defense have gotten us here. We had one error but other than that, making all the plays in the field was huge.
Wilkins added, “The first game, I thought if the ball bounced a few different ways we could’ve pulled it out. It was nice to see the girls get more comfortable in the second game. Hopefully this is a nice steppingstone for us and we can grab a few more wins.”
The Lynners (1-1) were scheduled to be back in action bright and early today (9) against tournament host Jesse Burkett (2-0) at Ty Cobb Field in Worcester.
Saturday’s opener against Connecticut didn’t go the way the Lynn had hoped. The Lynners closed the game on a high note by scoring a pair of runs in the top of the seventh inning but fell, 9-4.
Starter Jenna Tobin pitched the first two innings. Tobin did a solid job in weathering a Connecticut storm that saw Lynn allow four unearned runs in the bottom the second.
Reliever Lily Newhall pitched the final four innings.
After a scoreless opening inning, the Lynners grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the second. Riley Mannion was hit by a pitch, Abby Fila walked and Lily Newhall (1-for-2) reached on a bunt single. Amanda Tobin walked with the bases loaded, allowing Mannion to score the game’s first run.
Connecticut answered with four runs in its half of the second, taking advantage of a pair of Lynn errors to score the first two. A groundout scored the third and a single added the fourth, giving Connecticut a 4-1 lead.
“The girls were tight in the first half of the game,” Wilkins said after Saturday’s game. “In a tournament like this, I expected them to be nervous for the first inning or so. They were nervous for the first few innings and then they started to get comfortable as the game went on.”
Connecticut bumped its lead to 6-1 in the fourth.
Julia Nickolau laced a one-out single in the fifth. Nickolau swiped second on a passed ball and came home on a Connecticut error, slimming Lynn’s deficit to 6-2.
Down 9-2 in the seventh, Lynn showed no quit. Gianna Coito (1-for-1) started the inning with a single and took second on a passed ball. Reese Brinkler followed with a walk. Nickolau’s groundout advanced Brinkler and Coito to second and third, respectively. Amanda Wilkins (1-for-3, 2 RBI) hit a 2-RBI single, scoring both runners to give Lynn hope at 9-4. Connecticut logged the final out of the game on a groundout to seal its win.