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Pirettes stroll into playoffs

Pirettes stroll into playoffs
Ryann Boening reaches for a grounder during the Poth Pirettes’ big 11-0 win over Marion.

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Lance Malcher
Sports Correspondent
April 19, 2011
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POTH -- The Poth Pirette softball team continued its incredible streak last week by knocking off the Luling Lady Eagles and the Marion Bulldogs to clinch a playoff berth and lock up the District 29-2A championship.

Poth started the week welcoming the Luling Lady Eagles for their second matchup in district play. From start to finish, Pirette senior pitcher Monica Cavazos dominated this game. From the mound, Cavazos was literally unhittable. Pitching a rare full seven-inning game, the San Antonio area’s leader in wins and strikeouts walked one batter while giving up no hits and striking out 14. For Cavazos, it was her eighth shutout and second no-hitter in district play. From the plate, Cavazos was just as punishing.

For Luling, starting pitcher Kaitlyn Mixon had better control over the explosive Pirette bats than most, scattering nine hits and holding the score down enough to force the full seven innings. While the Pirettes’ offense could be slowed, there was no stopping it. Helping her own cause, Cavazos led the Pirettes by going 2 for 4 with 3 RBIs. Senior first baseman Kaylee Lyssy also had a big night, driving in 3 runs with a double and a sacrifice fly. Outfielder Caitlyn Gorzell was a welcome contributor with a 2-out, 2-run single in the second. Kayla Boening’s knack for getting on base, and seasoned base-running skills, again proved in-valuable as she scored 2 runs in the contest.

The 9-0 victory set the stage for the rematch with the Marion Bulldogs -- the only team to have taken a lead over Poth into the bottom of the seventh inning. The Bulldogs did that when the two met back on March 29.

While the 8-7 win did not really give the Pirette team justice during its initial meeting, the 11-0, five-inning win last Friday night proved to all who most deserved the District 29-2A championship.

Matching the two best pitchers in the district, the Bulldogs’ Elija Defenbaugh and Poth’s Monica Cavazos drew a hefty crowd to the Poth softball field to watch the top two teams in the district square off one last time before the playoffs.

Cavazos was once again exceptional on the mound, scattering just three hits while striking out nine batters. With exceptional fielding play from all, including outfielders Kelsey Garcia, Destiny Rodriguez, and Lindsey Lyssy, the visiting Bulldogs were not able to advance a runner past second base. It was the Pirettes’ bats, though, that would cry for all the attention with a 15-hit barrage.

Lindsay Lyssy continued to swing a hot bat, going 2 for 3 for the second straight game. She scored 2 runs. Sophomore third baseman Ryann Boening also remained on a solid hitting streak by going 2 for 3 and scoring 2 runs, as well. Rodriguez got in on the action, going 2 for 3 with a double and driving in 2 runs.

The offensive player of the game, however, was freshman catcher Charity Fuller. Fuller went 3 for 3 in the contest with two singles. It was in the third inning, though, with the bases loaded and a full count, when Fuller absolutely crushed the ball, sending it deep over the left-center field fence for a grand slam home run that sent the continuously growing crowd into a frenzy.

Carrying a 6-0 lead into the fifth inning, the only question remaining was how many innings would it take? An onslaught of Pirette hits in the fifth soon put that question to rest. Following a two-out RBI double by senior Kayla Boening, junior second baseman Heather Rocha stepped up to the plate and promptly ended the game with her second home run of district play. The 2-run shot brought the game to an end due to the 10-run mercy rule after five innings.

District play comes to an end this week as the Pirettes welcome the Nixon-Smiley Lady Mustangs to celebrate Parents Night. From there, Head Coach Carilee Robbins and the Pirettes set their sights on preparation for what appears to be a very solid run at that elusive state softball championship.

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