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Last updated: July 26. 2014 10:35PM - 987 Views
By Jay Monahan For The Times Leader



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BRIAR CREEK — The difference in Saturday’s second round game was a common theme in youth softball — bases on balls. And Kasidy Slusser doesn’t like to give out any.


Slusser did not allow a walk for the second straight game to lead Nanticoke to the winners bracket final with an 11-5 victory over DuBois Saturday in the Little League 10-11 Softball state championships.


The Nanticoke ace, who earned three walks just by herself, went six innings and allowed five earned runs. Slusser buckled down late in the game to retire seven of the final nine batters.


“She did great,” Nanticoke coach Colleen Baird said. “It’s very important not to let those runners on base. Unlike yesterday’s game, this team likes to steal. Once they get that runner on, they’re going to steal them to get any (run) they can. You never know if it’s going to come down to a (one-run) game. The less of a chance you give them the better.”


Nanticoke will face the winner of Saturday’s Perkiomen Valley vs. West Side game at 5 p.m. today at Berwick’s Ber Vaughn Park.


Nanticoke took advantage of a limited strike zone in the top of the first, forcing an early exit from DuBois starter Alana Burton. Eight of the first nine batters of the game reached base, compliments of three walks and two hit-by-pitch. Allison Keener drove in two with a single, and Nanticoke opened the game with a six-run lead.


Unlike Friday’s 18-1 victory, Nanticoke’s opponent was able to find its footing with two runs in the bottom of the first. DuBois committed two costly errors in the top of the second to supply Nanticoke with a comfortable 8-2 lead.


“I think we were still going from yesterday’s win,” Baird said. “We were able to keep our bats going right from the first inning.”


Nanticoke’s glovework kept DuBois to just one run in the second. Jenna Baron stabbed a liner at first base. One batter later, right fielder Emily Cullen made a spectacular diving play down the right field line, losing her protective mask as she rolled over with ball in hand.


“Oh my God, I think I was jumping up for joy,” Baird said. “They both had good catches. They were phenomenal.”


Nanticoke’s defensive play came through again in the fifth with a five-run lead. DuBois had runners at first and second with two outs, and shortstop Olivia Nice made a heads-up play to throw lead runner Mia Cugley out at third on a grounder to the hole.


Kyrstin Montgomery shined for Nanticoke at the plate with a 3 for 4 performance with two runs scored and an RBI. Riley Baird went 2 for 2 with a run and an RBI. Baron and Keener each scored twice.


Olivia Johansson and Morgan Felix each drove in two RBI for DuBois. Taylor Smith cooled the Nanticoke bats by allowing one earned run in 5 2/3 innings of relief.


***

Nanticoke 11, DuBois 5

Nanticoke`AB`R`H`BI`2B`3B`HR


Riley Baird 2b`2`1`2`1`0`0`0


Skyler Esser ph`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


Myla Vnuk 3b`5`0`1`0`0`0`0


Jenna Baron 1b`2`2`1`0`0`0`0


Kasidy Slusser p`1`1`0`0`0`0`0


Allison Keener c`4`2`1`2`0`0`0


Olivia Nice ss`2`1`1`0`0`0`0


Abby Cullen`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


Nina Zendarski cf`2`1`0`1`0`0`0


Abecka Jones`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


Kyrstin Montgmry lf`4`2`3`1`0`0`0


Emily Cullen rf`3`0`0`0`0`0`0


Mackenzie Casey`0`1`0`0`0`0`0


Totals`28`11`9`5`0`0`0


DuBois`AB`R`H`BI`2B`3B`HR


Alana Burton`4`2`3`0`0`0`0


Olivia Johanssn`4`0`1`2`0`0`0


Sophie Maloney`3`1`1`0`0`0`0


Morgan Felix`3`0`2`2`1`0`0


Alex Vulpe`3`0`0`0`0`0`0


Lukin Smith`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


Mia Cugley`2`0`1`0`1`0`0


Maddie Yu`2`0`1`0`0`0`0


Makenna Brittn`1`0`0`0`0`0`0


Taylor Smith`3`2`2`0`0`0`0


Cameron Bailey`1`0`1`1`0`0`0


Caylee Thompsn`2`0`0`0`0`0`0


Totals`29`5`10`5`2`0`0


Nanticoke`620`201`—`11


DuBois`210`200`—`5


Nanticoke`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO


Kasidy Slusser`6`10`5`5`0`1


DuBois`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO


Alana Burton`0.1`1`6`6`3`0


Taylor Smith`5.2`8`5`1`3`4


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