Following an opening couple of weeks of hard work with little in the way of tangible results, Long Reach got itself something to celebrate Tuesday.
Lightning pitchers Kelsey Widmaier and Isa Carunungan combined to limit Oakland Mills’ offense to just three runs, while the Long Reach bats delivered hits up and down the line-up en route to a breakthrough, 13-3, victory.
“We’ve had some good games, like that one-run loss to Old Mill in nine innings, but there’s definitely something to be said for getting a solid win like this,” Long Reach coach Melissa Boardman said. “I feel like with the effort the girls are putting in, they deserve a game like this.”
Over the course of the game, which lasted five innings, every Long Reach batter managed at least one hit. It seemed that after the Lightning offense broke through for three runs in the second inning, everyone got hot.
Long Reach (1-3, 1-4) put at least three runs on the board in each of the final four innings.
“Today, the bats really came alive,” said Long Reach captain Alina Milauskas, who had two hits, two runs scored, two RBI, a stolen base and was responsible for ending the game with a double. “Once everyone starts hitting, everything keeps building and I thought the excitement level really stayed up throughout the game.”
There were plenty of standouts for the Lightning.
In addition to pitching a scoreless final two innings Carunungan delivered two triples, two RBI and two runs at the plate. She also robbed Oakland Mills of a double in the third inning with a diving catch in left field.
Noelle Colligan tripled and scored two runs, Madison Basham doubled in Long Reach’s first run, while Abby Bakunas delivered a couple of RBI hits of her own. Even pinch-hitters Heather McKay and Andrea Padilla got into the act in the fifth inning by delivering hits and scoring runs.
“As a coach, a game like this is really great because we see all of them working so hard and it’s very rewarding to see them all succeed together in one game,” Boardman said. “Everyone did something to contribute to this win.”
Even in the loss, Oakland Mills had its share of highlights. Alexis Shelton got on base twice, stole three bases and scored two of the team’s three runs. Her walk in the first inning was responsible for setting the Scorpions up for an early 1-0 advantage.
Junior Tori Gordon also had a standout day, pitching her way to four strikeouts and delivering a couple singles on her way to scoring the team’s other run.
Oakland Mills (0-4, 1-4) found itself very much in it through the first two-and-a-half innings, sitting it a 3-3 tie at that point. But Long Reach put three on the board in the bottom of the third to establish a cushion and then kept adding to it each inning after that.
“Once the momentum swung, we had a hard time getting it back,” Oakland Mills coach Skip Yarn said. “They made some big defensive plays to rob us of a couple hits and they brought their pitcher (Isa) in, who I thought did a real nice job.
“It just wasn’t our day today.”
Long Reach 13, Oakland Mills 3
123 45 R-H-E
OM 120 00 3-6-2
LR 033 43 13-16-3