By Jesse Rosenthal
Coach Melissa Edwards and the Pierson Varsity Softball club improved to 6-1 on the season Friday as they handed Hampton Bays a 3-2 loss on their own diamond. You can’t win them all though, as the Lady Whalers found Tuesday night in Bayport-Blue Point where they acquired only their second loss of the season in a close 2-1 pitching duel.
Melanie Stafford has been dominant on the mound. With 65 strike outs already this season, she allowed only four hits, striking out another four in Friday’s game in Hampton Bays. “Melanie is doing a great job,” said Coach Edwards. “She is finally coming into her own.”
Although it was not a high scoring game, bats were hot when they needed to be and the Lady Whalers came up big in clutch situations. Doing her job in the cleanup position, Kaci Kohne hit a big triple in the top of the third scoring Natalie Abbene from second base to give Pierson their first run of the game.
In the top of the fifth, big bats, smart base running and some small favors from the Hampton Bays infield would give Pierson the lead. After Abbene singled, advanced to second on an error and then stole third, Kasey Gilbride hit a triple to score Abbene and tie the game at two.
With Gilbride on third, Melanie Stafford walked. Stafford advanced to second on a throwing error and Gilbride stole home, scoring the go-ahead run and ultimately giving the Lady Whalers their sixth win.
Coach Edwards was pleased with the turnout. “It was an overall great game,” she said. “My kids were intense each pitch and each at bat. It’s always nice to play Hampton Bays and it’s even sweeter to walk away with the win.”
The Bayport game went the other way unfortunately. Stafford pitched well, allowing only 2 runs, but Bayport 8th grader Lauren Peterson was dialed in. She went
4-for-4 with a double, a stolen base and the game winning RBI.
With some solid divisional competition coming their way the next few weeks, Coach Edwards and her Lady Whalers are remaining positive, even in the face of Tuesday night’s tough loss.
“We have a pretty decent schedule coming up but if we continue to do what we have been doing, taking it one game at a time, one at bat at a time, one play at a time, we have the ability to beat any team,” said Edwards. “We have the ability to beat any team. These girls finally realize that. Now it’s nice to just sit back and watch them play.”
Look for good competition in Elwood/John Glenn at Pierson this Friday at 5 p.m in Mashashimuet Park, followed by another home game against local rivals Southampton next Tuesday and a trip to Babylon the following day.