Quick start pushes Huskies

Morningstar taps RBI?triple, double, scores twice in contest

Sentinel photo by MATT STRICKER
Mifflin County’s Jade Morningstar, left, starts her slide into home as Red Land catcher Kimmy Piscotty gloves the ball during fifth inning action Tuesday in Lewistown.

LEWISTOWN — Mifflin County softball came out of the gates swinging to the tune of three runs in the first inning. The Huskies’ bats then joined the outside conditions and cooled down some.

The three runs would have been enough, but they did find some more offensive success to hold off Red Land, 5-2, in Mid-Penn action Tuesday afternoon.

Madison Myers got the action started with a leadoff single, getting into scoring postion when she stole second base. She moved over to third when Chloe Fitzgerald flew out in foul territory in right field.

Olivia Ahern drove her in for the game’s first run when she singled up the middle and advanced to second on the throw back in. Ahern didn’t have to stay on the base paths long as Jade Morningstar ripped the second pitch she saw for a triple to right field.

Morningstar had herself a fine game, going 2-for-3 with that run producing triple, a double and two runs scored.

She was the third to cross the plate in the first inning on an Alyssa Schnell sacrifice fly to left that couldn’t have been hit much better if the third baseman had tried.

“We started off really well and then their pitcher (Tabitha Moyer) just started throwing her kind of junk stuff,” Mifflin County coach Jack McCurdy said. “That’s always really effective (against us) because she came out throwing a little harder earlier and I think we were timing that up pretty good. I think when she started throwing her change a lot, you could see it folds up some of our kids.”

The Huskies struck for another run in the second when Alyssa Souders got into scoring position on an infield throwing error to start the frame. It looked as if Moyer and the Patriots were going to work themselves out of danger with a pair of fly outs to left, but Chloe Fitzgerald had other ideas.

The Huskies’ center fielder went the other way for a single to right and a bad play in the outfield allowed Souders to score and Fitzgerald to move all the way to third.

The Patriots got on the board in the fourth inning when Paige Webster hit a two-out double to left-center field that drove in Lindsey Keiser and Angela Briggs.

Keiser reached via a leadoff walk whereas Briggs reached after getting hit by a pitch prior to Websters’ double.

Webster was one of two Patriots to have both a multi-hit game and a double. Becca Updegroff was the other.

Most of the Patriots’ offensive success came against Huskies’ starter Madison Ream. She, however, was strong over five innings of work allowing four hits, walking two and striking out another two.

Then any momentum Red Land had went away faster than a Devanie Condrack pitch when McCurdy turned to her to close out the last two innings.

The change of speed between Ream and Condrack was evident and the Patriots struggled to catch up. McCurdy says Condrack is the fastest pitcher the Huskies have in their arsenal.

“Maddie did a great job. She really did. She threw well, but we needed to change things up,” he said. “I knew she would come in firing like that.”

Condrack had herself a 1-2-3 inning in the sixth — all strikeouts. Webster got the lone hit off her to start the seventh, but Condrack had no problem closing out the Patriots, picking up another strikeout in the seventh before a pair of groundouts to finish the game.

The use of multiple pitchers is something that could be here to stay.

“I could have gone with Jade because she throws that slow changeup, and curves,” McCurdy said. “That’s what I mean about this team. We have all these pitchers and we just have to learn how to use them effectively, especially when we face a really good hitting team.”

The Huskies tacked on one last run in the fifth after Cassidy Wilson had a productive groundout that scored Morningstar, who doubled to start the home half.

The JV team beat Red Land 20-2 in five innings. Audrey Jordan had three hits including a two-run home run.

Mifflin County puts its undefeated start to the season on the line when it travels to Central Dauphin Thursday for a likely faceoff against Sam Gress, a pitcher McCurdy says is one of the best in the state.

“We’re going to see a lot of games like this. They’re not all going to be blowouts,” he said. “We’re probably going to next face one of the best pitchers in the state and so I’m curious to see how the kids react to it, how they do with it. … We aren’t going to score eight or nine runs against her, at least I don’t think so. It would be great to see, but she’s a great pitcher.”

Mifflin County 5, Red Land 2

Red Land 000 200 0 — 2-5-2

Mifflin County 310 010 x– 5-6-1

WP: Madison Ream. LP: Tabitha Moyer. SO: Moyer, Marina Cassalt (RL); Ream 2, Devanie Condrack 4 (MC). BB: Moyer 2, Cassalt 2 (RL); Ream 2 (MC). 3B: Jade Morningstar (MC). 2B: Becca Updegraff, Karyssa Geckle, Paige Webster (RL); Morningstar (MC). MH: Updegraff 2-for-4, Webster 2-for-3 (RL); Morningstar 2-for-3 (MC). RBIs: Webster 2 (RL); Ahern, Morningstar, Alyssa Schnell, Cassidy Wilson (MC).