KINGSTON — A divisional title is out of reach for both. But with the District 2 softball playoffs just two weeks away, every remaining game is a way to build some momentum.
On Wednesday, Wyoming Valley West did so while Crestwood struggled to find any consistency.
The Spartans won their second game in a row — and third in their last four — as they defeated Crestwood 3-1 in a Wyoming Valley Conference Division 1 game.
Haley Gayoski and Kymber Letteer had RBI singles for Valley West (5-6), which swept the two games with Crestwood (4-6). Danielle Grega knocked in the first run on a sacrifice bunt that scored Sabrina Hamersley, who started the first inning with a triple.
Freshman Chloe Ruckle was solid on the mound, limiting the Comets to two hits over the final five innings. She benefited from strong defense highlighted by a couple outstanding plays on the left side of the infield. Third baseman Sarah Fugate lunged for a foul liner to record the first out of the sixth and shortstop Casey Dolan made a leaping snag of a liner to end the game.
“This is probably the best game we’ve had,” Valley West coach Desiree Hooper said. “They worked hard to the very end, gave 100 percent and there were no errors. They just keep playing better every game. I’m very proud of them.”
As for Crestwood, it was another game where the offense didn’t take advantage of its opportunities. A baserunning miscue led to an inning-ending double play on a soft liner to Dolan at shortstop in the third. The Comets had two on with two outs in the fifth, but failed to score. And when they did connect, Valley West made the plays.
The net result was Crestwood scoring one run in a game for the fifth time. The Comets lost all five.
“We hit the ball hard all day,” Crestwood coach Bob Bertoni said. “We just can’t put a full game together. One game our pitching is terrible and our offense is good. The next game the pitching is good and our offense is bad.”
Crestwood’s only run came in the second when Juliet Wotherspoon batted twice despite the Comets sending just five batters to the plate. The reason — they batted out of order twice in the inning. That led to Wotherspoon sacrificing Alyssa Davies to second and then returning to the plate to score her with a double.
Bertoni took responsibility for the gaffe. He had two batting orders prepared for the game. The one exchanged prior to the contest was different than the one the girls were following on a whiteboard near the on-deck area.
Rachel Ritz cf3010000
Mel Snyder c3010000
Ashlee Oleginski 1b3000000
Alyssa Davies p3110000
Juliet Wotherspoon lf3011100
Meghan Waite 3b2000000
Kianna Thompson rf3020000
Wyo. Valley WestABRHBI2B3BHR
Sabrina Hamersley rf3110010
Danielle Grega 2b2101000
Megan Kane 1b3000000
Kelcie Senchak cf3000000
Haley Gayoski dp3011000
Alexa Vergo pr0000000
Casey Dolan ss3110000
Sarah Fugate 3b3010000
Leanne Dellarte lf2000000
Kymber Letteer c2021100
Chloe Ruckle p0000000
Crestwood0100000 — 1
Wyoming Valley West200100x —3
Davies (L, 4-6)663208
Wyo. Valley WestIpHRERBBSO
Ruckle (W, 5-5)661102
Nanticoke 14, Pittston Area 1 (5 inn.)
Nanticoke jumped out quickly, scoring eight times in the first two innings to defeat Pittston Area.
Kayley Schinski had a double and single for the Trojanettes, who swept the two meetings both via the 10-run rule. Kayla Benjamin and Taylor Briggs each added a pair of hits.
Taylor Baloga had two hits for Pittston Area.
Nanticoke44321 — 14
Pittston Area00100 — 1
WP — Allie Matulewski (4-3) 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K. LP — Taylor Baloga (2-9) 5 IP, 9 H, 14 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, 1 K.
2B — Kayley Schinski (N), Antoinette Scialpi (PA). 3B — Kara Voyton (N).
Top hitters — NAN, Kayla Benjamin 2 hits, Schinski 2 hits, Taylor Briggs 2 hits. PA Baloga 2 hits.
Hazleton Area 6, Coughlin 3
The Cougars rallied for the second time this week, scoring four runs in the top of the seventh to defeat Coughlin.
Maria Trivelpiece led the offense with three hits. Pitcher Becky Demko struck out eight.
Katelyn Colleran and Marissa Ross had two hits each for Coughlin.
Hazleton Area1000104 — 6
Coughlin0020100 — 3
WP — Becky Demko (7-1) 7 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 8 K. LP — Julie Shuchocki (3-8) 7 IP, 10 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 2 K.
Top hitters — HAZ, Maria Trivelpiece 3-4; COU, Katelyn Colleran 2-4, Marrissa Ross 2-3.
Wyoming Area 10, Lake-Lehman 4
Winning pitcher Alex Holtz and Nicole Turner had doubles as Wyoming Area had 19 hits in its victory.
Holtz, Turner and Adrienne Przybyla all had three hits for the Warriors.
Brit Meeker was 3-for-3 for Lehman.
Lake-Lehman0103000 — 4
Wyoming Area402013x — 10
WP — Alex Holtz (7-3) 7 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. LP — Jordan Hodle (0-8) 6 IP, 19 H, 10 R, 10 ER, 0 BB, 2 K.
2B — Korri Wandel (LL), Hodle (LL), Nicole Turner (WA), Holtz (WA).
Top hitters — LL, Brit Meeker 3-3. WA, Turner 3-4, Adrienne Przybyla 3-4; Holtz 3-4; Bree Bednarski 2-4; Emily Wolfgang 2-4.
The Dallas at Berwick game scheduled for Wednesday will be played at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Also, the Wyoming Area at Dallas game scheduled for Monday will be played on Tuesday starting at 4:15 p.m.