Groundworks, Schenck’s Win

Groundworks planted a 6-2 loss on P.B.A.
Emma Beudert, Groundworks’ pitcher, held P.B.A. in check in the first game of their first-round East Hampton women’s slow-pitch softball league playoff series. Craig Macnaughton

Groundworks, which has some young blood in players like Thea Grenci, Casey Brooks, and the Daunt cousins, Zoe and Lacey, planted a 6-2 loss on P.B.A., and Schenck Fuels, the last seed, upset the defending champion, Bono Plumbing, 7-2 in women’s slow-pitch league playoff openers last Thursday at the Terry King ball field in Amagansett.

Insofar as the Schenck-Bono game went, it should be said that Bono barely fielded the minimum eight, Bethany Trowbridge’s arrival in the parking lot just before game time preventing a forfeit.

Ryan Troudt, Bono’s manager, did the best he could to close up the gaping hole in right field, repositioning his second baseman, Kara Struble, frequently, depending on who was hitting.

Dawn Green pitched admirably, but the outcome was pretty much of a foregone conclusion. Schenck’s scored four times in the top of the first inning — a lead it was not to relinquish — three of the runs coming home when Jess Bono, the third baseman, who otherwise fielded her position well that night, threw wide of second base in going for a forceout there, the ball coming to rest in an unpatrolled shallow right field as runners — the bases had been loaded, with one out — motored their way home.

Schenck’s loaded the bases again in the third, again with one out. Nicole Yeager, the first baseman, who bats sixth in the lineup, plated two with a hard base hit for a 6-0 lead.

Bono got one back in the bottom half. After Gabby Green struck out, Mylan Le, who once played in two national collegiate World Series, alertly moved up to second after singling into shallow left field, advanced to third on a 6-to-3 groundout, and scored when Robin Helgerson, the second baseman for Schenck’s, lost Dawn Green’s popup in the lights.

A double by Mireille Sturman put Schenck runners on second and third in the top of the fourth. A subsequent walk issued by Green loaded them, with two outs, but Kathryn Mirras popped out to Struble at second to end the threat.

“That’s what we needed right there,” Troudt said as his players headed for the dugout.

Having come in as a pinch-runner, Le scored again in the fifth, dashing from first to third on a fielder’s choice, just beating Mirras’s tag, and coming home when Bono’s seventh hitter, Shauna Stonemetz, singled.

Schenck’s was to tack on one more run in the sixth, on a bases-loaded single. That inning ended when Struble hauled in a fly hit her way by Kathy Amicucci, a lefty. “Make that an F4,” Troudt said.

A 4-6-3 double play took Bono out of its sixth, and, with the bases loaded and one out in the team’s last at-bat, Struble popped out to Mirras and Gabby Green dribbled out to Mirras, who stepped on the base for the game-ending forceout.

Asked afterward if he would have all his players for Tuesday’s game, the second in a best-of-three series, Troudt said he hoped so.

In the night’s first game, Groundworks, the second seed, as aforesaid, defeated third-seeded P.B.A. 6-2.

A double by Erica Silich scored T. Schirrippa with a run for P.B.A. in the top of the first. Groundworks came right back in its half, however, as Kim Hren, the number-four hitter, drove in two with a bases-loaded single, and Brooks, the left fielder, drove in another for a 3-1 lead.

Groundworks made it 6-1 in the fourth. Zoe Daunt reached first base safely on an error by the third baseman, Tara Fordham, in leading off. Randi Cherill’s subsequent hard-hit grounder caromed off of Fordham’s ankle, and Michelle Grant was walked, loading the bases for Lacey Daunt, with one out. Daunt made it to first as a run came home on a fielder’s choice play, after which Emma Beudert, Groundworks’ pitcher, hit a wobbly liner toward second that Schirrippa, P.B.A.’s shortstop, could not convert into a force at second.

Despite three Groundworks errors, P.B.A. could only come up with one run in the top of the sixth and stranded runners at first and second in the seventh as Julie Terry was retired on a game-ending pitcher-to-first groundout.