Andes' Karli Tait throws no-hitter; RCS tops MCS in top team match-up

By Julia Green
The Andes softball team that traveled to Roxbury on Thursday was a very different team than the one that took the diamond against the visiting Margaretville Blue Devils just a day earlier.
When the host Mountaineers faced the visiting Blue Devils on Wednesday afternoon, early innings indicated that it would be a tight game. However, a tough sixth inning put Andes in a three-run hole, and an eight-run seventh inning by the Blue Devils all but put it out of reach for the Mountaineers.
“We committed 12 errors total and eight in the seventh inning,” said Andes Head Coach Tamara Snyder, adding that seven of Margaretville’s eight runs scored in the final inning came from defensive errors. Only four of the Blue Devils’ runs came from hits.
“It was like watching another team out there,” Snyder said.
Andes pitcher Karli Tait tallied 10 strikeouts and gave up only two walks while Margaretville pitcher Danielle Hull tallied three strikeouts and gave up four walks to earn the win.
“It’s not all about the pitcher,” Snyder said. “There are eight other people on the field, and sometimes they get really comfortable with the fact that Karli can throw really well.”
The Blue Devils were led by Erica Faulkner, who went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs. Rachel Andrew went 2-for-4 to lead the Mountaineers, who avenged Wednesday’s loss with a 4-3 win over Roxbury on Thursday.
“As soon as the Roxbury game was over, I told them, ‘This is exactly why I have high expectations of you,’” Snyder said. “I know what they can do.”
Ninth-grader Kelsey Little sparked Andes’ offense, connecting for a single in the third inning to drive in two runs to tie the game at two apiece. Mariah Ruff and Rachel Andrews also fueled the Mountaineers, as Ruff scored two runs and connected for two hits and Andrews also tallied two hits. Jenna Weaver drove in two runs on a single in the fifth inning to give Andes a two-run lead.
The Mountaineers took a 4-3 lead into the bottom of the seventh inning, when Roxbury’s ninth batter grounded out to the pitcher for the first out. Roxbury pitcher Heather Davie connected for a base hit to left field for a single to put the scoring run on base.
“I knew she was the tying run and I told them not to worry about the runner,” Snyder said.
Davie attempted to steal second but was thrown out by Andes catcher Ruff for the second out. The Rockets’ Rachel Meckes grounded out to second base to end the game.
“It was a quick seventh inning and it was really awesome to watch them,” Snyder said. “I don’t even know what the difference was, but I was really proud to watch all the things that they did well, to come out and beat the best team in the league.”
Tait tallied 10 strikeouts and had one walk and one hit batter for Andes, while Davie also had 10 strikeouts and gave up six walks for Roxbury.
Looking forward, Snyder said she hopes to get some more playing time for her less experienced players as the season winds down, as Andes will not be competing in sectional play.
“You have to make errors to learn, or you never learn how to do it right the next time,” she said. “All of it is really a learning experience.”
The Mountaineers will face the visiting Stamford Indians at home on Friday.
The Rockets rebounded from Thursday’s loss to post a convincing 16-6 win over the host Margaretville Blue Devils on Friday afternoon in a match-up between the top two teams in the Delaware League.
Early innings were what one might expect of the two teams atop the league standings, as Margaretville tallied two runs in the opening inning and Roxbury equalized with two runs in the second. The Blue Devils added two more in the third inning to make it 4-2, but the Roxbury offense came alive in the top of the fourth, scoring six runs.
Margaretville attempted to battle back in the bottom of the fourth, putting two more runs on the board to make it 8-6, but the Rockets’ offense kept up the heat in the top of the sixth, adding eight more runs to take a 10-run lead.
Roxbury pitcher Heather Davie tallied eight strikeouts in the outing to earn the win for Roxbury, which received two hits each from Tarah DiBenedetto and Nevada Schuman. Davie and teammate Briana George tallied the only extra-base hits as they both connected for doubles.
The Blue Devil offense was led by Erica Faulkner and Jess Barringer, who each tallied two hits for Margaretville. With the loss, the Blue Devils moved to 7-5 overall and 7-4 in league play. They were scheduled to face the visiting Wildcats of Hunter-Tannersville on Tuesday; no result was available at press time. They will travel to Downsville to play the Eagles on Wednesday.
The Rockets were scheduled to face the host Downsville Eagles on Tuesday; no result was available at press time. They will play at Stamford on Wednesday.
Margaretville and Roxbury will meet once again in Roxbury on Thursday.