It lasted just two batters; Caroline Medino singled, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and score on Danielle Regina’s single. They will face Clifton who defeated Hawthorne Thursday afternoon.
“It was very important for us to not overlook this game,” said Medino. “We’ve be saying since the beginning of the year that we need to approach every team the same way. We have to come out and show them who we are.”
The Cardinals offense took a while to get untracked. The Kennedy starting pitcher threw nothing but change ups. Hitters are trained to look for the occasional off-speed pitch and can react, but something about of steady diet of them seems to get them out of sync. That is until the lineup comes around for the second time.
“I think we were dropping our hands and popping up,” said Medino. “We had to adjust, wait a bit and drive it hard and down, which we did later in the game.”
In the third, Pompton Lakes sent 12 hitters to the plate and scored six runs. The Cardinals had six hits and a pair of walks in the inning. Medino, Regina, and Sam Beazley all had hits to drive in a run and Sara Villalonga drove in two with another base hit.
“Runs makes me feel more confident, that my team is helping me out,” said Medino. “Not just offensively but defensively as well.”
In the fourth inning, Emily Schaper continued her hot hitting when she smacked a grand slam to deep left. It went so far over the head of the outfielder than Schaper was rounding third base when the throw was getting to the infield. Pompton Lakes‘ senior left fielder had three hits and five RBI on the day. She is getting hot at the right time for the team.
“She has been hitting the ball extremely well,” said Head Coach Karyn Hennessy. “She is one of those kids that quietly goes about things and does her job. When she gets a hold of the ball, it really goes far. She’s been a lot more consistent.”
In the circle, Medino was her efficient self. She breezed through the first four innings allowing just one base runner, an infield single, while striking out five. In the fifth, two hits, a walk and a couple of errors allowed Kennedy to extend the game. Hennessy knows that in order for her team to get to the semi-final round in the tournament, the defense is going to have to play better.
“We got the job done today but we talked after the game that we need to play better defense,” said the coach. “We’ve had lapses that have allowed runs to score when they shouldn’t. We need to tighten that up a bit.”