WORCESTER– The Lynn Senior Little League Softball All-Stars couldn’t battle back after falling behind early, falling to New York 6-2 in an East Regional elimination game at a cloudy Vernon Hill Park Wednesday afternoon.
New York jumped out to a hot start in the first inning, with four consecutive batters recording hits and scoring.
“I think we had those first-inning jitters again,” Lynn manager Chad Wilkins said. “But I’m extremely proud of the way these girls just hung in there after getting in a hole early and we actually played a great game the rest of the way.
“It was 2-2 the rest of the way,” Wilkins added. “I’m real proud of the way they played a full seven innings today.”
Aside from a 10-0 win over Rhode Island Sunday, the Lynners came into Wednesday’s game with struggles at the plate.
But they shook those off in time for Wednesday’s game and Lynn had no problems hitting the ball, with eight total hits, but just couldn’t get the runs it needed to come back. Kaelyn Jennings (2-for-3 with 1 RBI) had Lynn’s lone RBI of the game. Julia Nickolau (3-for-4) and Amanda Wilkins (2-for-4) both scored for Lynn while Riley Mannion (1-for-3) also had a hit.
Brittany Tomala started things off for New York with a leadoff triple in the first inning. The next two batters laced back-to-back RBI singles to give New York a 2-0 lead. The next batter, Laura Cipollina hit a two-run home run to extend the lead to 4-0.
After the first inning, Lynn starting pitcher Lily Newhall managed to settle in. Newhall allowed two runs on four hits while walking three and striking out three in her final five innings of work.
“They just got hits early,” Wilkins said. “Lilly started placing the ball after that and that helped a lot and kept them off balance a bit.”
New York extended its lead in the third inning. Two walks and a single by Raegan McGovern loaded the bases for Kya Reid. Reid followed suit by keeping the rally alive, lacing a two-run single to cushion her team’s lead to 6-0.
Lynn found the scoreboard in the fourth inning. Amanda Wilkins started the inning with a double and advanced to third base after tagging up on a fly ball. The next batter, Riley Mannion, hit a hard ground ball that was misplayed in the infield, and brought Wilkins home to cut the score to 6-1.
Lynn plated one more run in the fifth inning. Nickolau singled with two outs and stole second to put herself in scoring position. Jennings brought Nickolau home with a RBI double to make the score 6-2.
In both the sixth and seventh innings, Lynn was able to get two runners on base but couldn’t get the hits to drive the runners in. New York escaped the late jams and sealed the 6-2 win.
Lynn ended the the East Regionals with a 1-4 record after winning the Massachusetts State championship.
“One of my favorite teams,” Wilkins said. “I’ve been coaching a long time and this is by far one of my favorite teams.
“They’re one of the hardest working teams too,” Wilkins added. “It’s just an awesome group of girls and parents and we’ve had a great time throughout this whole run.”