【N.J】 Youthful Bristol softball’s season ends in Class 2A quarterfinals – – – New Jersey News

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ALLENTOWN, Pa. — Although the Bristol High School softball team put together another very solid 18-win season, the thing to remember it was very young with just one senior starter.

On Thursday afternoon that youth showed as the Warriors’ season came to an end in a 10-0 loss to an impressive South Williamsport team (21-2) in a PIAA Class 2A state tournament quarterfinal round game at Patriot’s Park.

“We did play like a young team,” agreed Bristol coach Dave Chichilitti. “We can play better, but we will learn from this.”

Bristol was never in this game as it could manage only one hit – a fifth-inning infield single by Mackenzie Kauffman – against South Williamsport sophomore righty Alizabeth Schuler (eight Ks).

The other side of the scorebook was equally as one sided as the Mounties piled up 10 runs on nine hits in a game that ended on the run rule in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Leading the District 4 champions at the plate was Kendall Cardone, who looked nothing like a typical No. 7 hitter with a double, single, home run and three RBIs.

Schuler, meanwhile, is not overwhelmingly fast, but her control was very good and the Warriors had all kinds of trouble dealing with her change-up.

“That’s a problem for us,” said Chichilitti. “We don’t see change-up pitchers during the season to get us ready for it.”

“I felt like everything was working for me today,” said Schuler. “This feels great. We wanted to come out strong. We wanted to get them out one, two, three and then show them who’s boss.”

The Mountains got on the board in the first inning on a  lead-off single to left by Gianna Goodman and double to right center by Schuler.

In the second they tacked on three more runs when Bristol committed the first of its five errors, and the Mounties got a run-scoring double by Cardone and an RBI single by Mikaiya Hills. Aleigha Rieppel also knocked in a run with a double in the second.

The lead grew to 8-0 in a third that included run-scoring singles by Cardone and Rieppel. The Mounties ended it in the fifth on a line-drive home run deep over the left field fence by Cardone and a walk-off error on a throw on a throw to the plate.

“It was a really good game for me,” said Cardone, who had hit only one other run home run this season. “We wanted to come out and attack right away. I think we can go very far.”

It certainly will be difficult to stop if Schuler continues to pitch like this.

“Her control was spot on today,” said South Williamsport coach Tom O’Malley. “She was moving the ball around and changing her speed. She also changed her levels up and down and moved the ball east and west. We had a good combination today of hitting, pitching and defense.”

South Williamsport was also strong in terms of base running as it stole five bases in as many attempts.

With a very promising freshman pitcher in Brianna Slack and a talented eighth grade team, Bristol is a rising young squad that will only get better in the coming years.

On the other hand, the same came be said about South Williamsport, which starts six sophomores and two freshmen.

The big difference is the Bristol players have not played nearly as much travel ball in the summer as the South Williamsport girls.

“This group went to the Little League World Series,” said O’Malley. “Our players may be young, but they have big-game experience. It allows them to play with a lot of confidence.”

Bristol (18-4) 000 00 – 0 1 5

South Williamsport (21-2) 134 02 – 10 9 0

WP-Schuler. LP-Slack. 2B-Schuler, Cardone (SW), Rieppel (SW). HR-Cardone. RBIs: Rieppel 3, Schuler, Cardone 3, Hills.

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