DuBois advances to winners' final with shutout win
DUBOIS — DuBois jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first inning and scored at least one run every inning after that to defeat Punxsy, 11-0, in Senior League All-Star action Thursday night in DuBois.
With the win, DuBois advances to the winners' bracket final and will play at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Bradford.
Punxsy will play in the losers' bracket against Brockway at 4 p.m. Saturday in Punxsutawney.
Punxsy's Lauren Wolfe pitched all five innings, allowing 11 runs, but most of the damage was done in the first inning when each DuBois hitter made solid contact, and DuBois batted around.
Punxsy manager Terry DeFoor had good things to say about Wolfe's pitching performance.
"She did good, and she fought back," he said.
DuBois leadoff hitter Katelyn LaBue tripled to right center to lead things off, and Kourtni Ball hit a two-run inside-the-park home run on a shot down the right field line that just made it past the outstretched glove of Punxsy right fielder Emily Jones.
Ball's home run ended up being the game winner, as Punxsy was unable to score despite having base runners on base in every inning.
Punxsy's greatest opportunity to score came in the fourth inning, when it loaded the bases with no outs.
But DuBois' defense was up to the test and kept the shutout alive for pitcher Taylor Thomas.
Emily Jones was hit by a pitch, and Shania DeFoor singled, moving Jones to second. Kat Nestel then walked to load the bases.
But the following three batters grounded into fielder's choices, with the first two coming at home plate, to end the Punxsy's threat.
"We had the bases loaded that one inning and had base runners on every inning," DeFoor said. "We just made some mental errors."
DuBois catcher Sam Snyder was the player who stood out the most for DuBois' defense, from a position that often goes unnoticed. Snyder picked off Punxsy leadoff hitter Autumn Rega at first in the first inning, and later caught Rega stealing, though that play was called back due to an illegal pitch.
Snyder showcasing her arm early in the game thwarted Punxsy's ability to be aggressive on the basepaths.
After the game ended, Punxsy's coaches had some questions for the umpiring crew.
Punxsy's coaching staff was under the impression that each player on the roster had to play. They protested to no avail.
"I have a sheet that says everyone must play six consecutive outs and one at-bat, but they're saying there's no substitution for Senior League," DeFoor said.
Although the offense was unable to put up any runs, DeFoor was still pleased with his girls' performance at the plate.
"They had a very good pitcher who threw really hard, and we hit the ball," he said. "That's something to feed off."
Punxsy will practice tonight before its game against Brockway Saturday.
"We'll work on some more defensive things, definitely," DeFoor said.