OBSERVER Staff Report
SILVER CREEK - The Fredonia Lady Hillbillies (5-1, 9-1) came away with a pair of non-league high school softball wins in the Hae Jude Tournament Saturday at Silver Creek Central School.
Fredonia held off a late rally to defeat the Eden Lady Raiders, 6-5, in the first game of the afternoon.
With the game tied 2-all heading into the bottom of the third inning, Katie Webster had a two-run double while Maddie Crandall and McKenna Leid added RBI knocks to give the Lady Hillbillies a four-run advantage.
Eden cut the lead to one in the top of the sixth and had the potential tying run on base until Crandall caught the runner stealing and sealed the Fredonia win.
"That was huge," Fredonia assistant coach Bob Sievert said. "Before we had the four unearned runs in the (third inning), it was back-to-back errors. This team takes advantage of whatever they can. Eden's got a good ball club."
Baylee Tarnowski went the distance as she allowed four runs on 10 hits, surrendered one walk and struck out five.
Morgan Genovese and Karli Schwertfager had RBI base hits in the first to give the Lady Hillbillies an early 2-0 advantage. Webster paced the Fredonia bats with a single, a double and an RBI while Leid added two hits and an RBI of her own.
In the second game, Fredonia downed the Cattaraugus-Little Valley Lady Timberwolves, 7-1.
The Lady Hillbillies carried a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the sixth and broke the game open with four insurance runs in the inning. Webster and Crandall had RBI base hits, Savannah Rivera drew a bases-loaded walk and Genovese scored a run on a ground ball.
Tess Schober started the second game and earned the win after she struck out four, walked two and allowed one earned run on four hits in five innings of work. Tarnowski relieved her in the sixth and struck out four in two perfect innings to earn the save.
Genovese had a 2-for-4 game with a triple and an RBI to lead Fredonia's offensive effort. Rivera went 1 for 3 with a pair of RBIs while Webster and Crandall added a hit and an RBI each.
"Cassie Essek played a great third base today," Sievert said. "She had six or seven chances and made every one. Our defense really came through for us. They were two good non-league games. It was good to get out and play two good teams and it worked out well."
Fredonia returns to action Monday at Olean.
In other games during the tournament, host Silver Creek lost its first game, 16-6, to Chautauqua Lake, before winning its first game of the season, 12-9, over Springville.
In the Black Knights' win, Courtney Cummings picked up the win after allowing seven runs on 11 hits while striking out three and walking two over 4-2/3 innings of work.
"It was a good tournament and a good turnout," Silver Creek head coach Stacie Bauer said. "We had eight teams and we got our first win. Hopefully the momentum is in our corner and we can go on from here."
Cora Utegg (RBI) paced the Silver Creek offense with a 4-for-4 performance while Christina Williams went 3 for 3, including a home run. Also for the Black Knights, MaryJoe Pearl (two RBIs) and Courtney Cummings went 2 for 4.
In its loss to Chautauqua Lake, Silver Creek managed nine hits off starter Jade Walsh and relievers Charity Ludwig and Lauren Cummings.
The Lady Thunderbirds led at the plate by the three-hit performances of Ashley Moulton (two RBIs) and Lauren Cummings (three RBIs) while Luci Sena (three RBIs) and Walsh (two RBIs) had two hits each.
For Silver Creek, Pearl went 3 for 3 with two RBIs, Courtney Cummings added two hits and as many RBIs and Utegg chipped in a base hit and two RBIs.
Allison Harford took the loss in the circle for the Black Knights after she allowed 15 runs on 15 hits over five innings. She struck out three and walked two before giving way to Brooke Birner, tossed two innings of scoreless relief, striking two and walking four.
Bauer and her team were pleased in picking up their first win of the season, but the head coach also took time to thank those who helped make the tournament a success.
"I'd like to thank the Silver Creek parents who helped with the concession stand and cheered us on (Saturday)," Bauer said. "And Hae Jude for sponsoring us."