Weekly Feature



2017-05-18 / Sports

Lancaster softball finishes regular season undefeated

TAYLOR NIGRELLI
Sports Reporter

Perfection is not a feat easily achieved. But Lancaster softball did just that in the regular season, winning all 20 of the games they competed in. The team is now the No. 1 team in the state, according to the New York Sportswriter Association’s Poll.

It was a busy final week for the Lady Legends, as the postponements and rainouts came home to roost. They played eight games in six days, winning in a variety of ways.

Monday, the team took on Hamburg and walked away with a 17-0 win. Erin Colucci led the team on offense, going 4-5 with three RBIs. Tina Stasiuk went 3-4 with four runs and five RBIs. Kylie Martz threw a complete game, allowing just three hits.

The next day featured 8-2 and 12-3 wins over Frontier. Jenna Patterson got the start in the first game, throwing a complete game and only allowing three hits. In the nightcap, Sam Moll led the offense with two hits and three RBIs.

Wednesday featured a 9-1 win over Clarence. Patterson got the win on the mound and helped her cause, going 3-4 with a double and an RBI at the plate. Colucci had three RBIs.

The Lady Legends then got a pair of shutout wins (14-0 and 18-0) over Jamestown. Jenna Bork pitched a complete game in the early contest, allowing two hits. Martz got the start in the second game, throwing five innings of one-hit ball.

But Friday was the most important game. Lancaster took on second-place Orchard Park with a chance to clinch the ECIC I title. They did just that with a 7-2 win.

The Lady Legends were actually trailing 2-0 early on. Olivia Kincanon singled to lead off the second. She scored on a single by Moll. Frankie Walker then worked a walk and scored on an RBI single by Madisyn Pepke. Martz got a two-out triple in the third and scored on an RBI single by Patterson. She then scored on a throwing error.

In the sixth inning, Kara Paradowski scored on a Colucci single. Kincanon put the game on ice with a two-run homer after that.

“Orchard Park is a great team,” Lancaster Coach Kelly Ambrose said. We knew what was riding on this game. Our nerves got the best of us at the beginning”, but we just kept hitting. We didn’t get down when we were losing. We were intent on winning that game. There was a giant standing in our way, so to be able to win by that much was great.”

The team followed that with a 9-5 win over Williamsville North. Moll went 2-3 while Bork got the save. Patterson hit a three-run homer.

The Lady Legends closed out the perfect season with a 5-3 win over Section V Our Lady of Mercy Tuesday.

“It’s been a very special season,” Ambrose said. “To be able to go undefeated when there are so many other great teams in our division is beyond what anyone could have expected. The girls are playing with confidence and really doing their best. But now our second season starts with the playoffs. But no matter what happens, we’re still excited about the regular season. It’s a big feat to go undefeated.”

Lancaster will begin the Class AA playoffs Tuesday when the Lady Legends play host to the winner of the pre-quarterfinal matchup between Clarence and Niagara Falls. They’ll be the top seed, but know full well they won’t have a cakewalk at any stage.

The team also finished as the top seed last season and was upset in the quarterfinal round as the seventh and eighth seeds went on to face off in the sectional title. game. This time of year makes for more upsets, which means teams that win need contributions up and down the lineup.

“We need to continue to get contributions up and down the order,” Ambrose said. “We’ve been really solid one through nine this year. We’ve had contributions come from everyone. We have to keep that up if we want to continue to have success.”

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