The Fredonia Lady Hillbillies' motto this season was, "It's tough enough to get three outs in an inning, we can't be giving them four or five outs an inning."
That's exactly what happened in the top of the seventh when the No. 12 Olean Lady Huskies scored two runs to upset the No. 5 Lady Billies 3-2 in the pre-quarterfinals of the Class B high school softball playoffs.
"We gave them too many outs in the last inning," Fredonia coach Dave Polechetti said. "We gave them a couple extra opportunities and they took advantage of them."
OBSERVER?Photo by John?Conti
Fredonia’s Marah?Dahn delivers a pitch during Wednesday’s?Section 6 Class B softball playoff game against Olean.
Fredonia did not allow a baserunner until there were two outs in the third inning when the Lady Huskies picked up a single from Nicole Russo.
During those first three innings, the Lady Hillbillies' pitcher Marah Dahn picked up seven of her 14 strikeouts. Dahn let up four hits, one walk and hit one hit batter, while allowing no earned runs.
"She had a terrific game," Polechetti said. "We didn't give her enough support. She absolutely deserved better."
During the same stretch of excellent pitching, offensively Fredonia wasn't doing to bad either. The Lady Hillbillies had runners in scoring position each of the first three innings, but were unable to bring a run home.
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"We got baserunners on all day, we just had a problem scoring them," Polechetti said. "We didn't get the big hits. It was a tough way to lose."
Scoring got under way which was a result of Fredonia's first error of the game in the top of the fifth. Olean's Chelsea Calabro hit a single up the middle to put the Lady Huskies up 1-0.
The Lady Billies bounced right back in the bottom half of the fifth when Laura Poweski led off with a walk. The second batter Aidan Geise popped up a bunt in an attempt to sacrifice Poweski.
With one out, Julie Arnold crushed a triple well over the center fielder's head to tie the game up 1-1.
"That was a huge hit," Polechetti said. "That was a shot, it was a probably the longest ball hit in the air here. The center fielder was running full speed for that and it was probably still 15 feet over her head."
Dahn got on with a bunt single and was then taken out for courtesy runner Kayla Voss who stole second base.
Arnold scored on a passed ball which brought Voss to third base and gave Fredonia a 2-1 edge.
In the bottom of the seventh, Olean's Kylie O'Connell reached base on an error and was then sacrificed to second base.
With one out, Alicia Mikowicz was hit by a pitch to bring runners at the corners for the Lady Huskies. Russo then reached on another error to load the bases.
"Unfortunately some of the plays we made errors on were not what you'd call difficult plays to make," Polechetti said. "They have to be made, especially at this level. Good teams make the routine plays."
Fredonia caught a break when Calabro's would be single hit the baserunner in the leg which resulted in a dead play and the runner, Russo, being called out.
"You have to give Olean credit," Polechetti said. "They hung in there and battled back."
With two strikes on her, Olean's number three hitter Marissa Lovia hit a single right up the middle which scored two runs and gave the Lady Huskies a 3-2 lead.
Calabro let up four hits and struck out 12 in the victory.