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Softball Generals are Region 3A Champions! » Herkimer Generals

Softball Generals are Region 3A Champions!

Ithaca, NY – The softball Generals added another title to their awe-inspiring season on Friday at Cornell University's softball stadium. The Generals swept the Tompkins Cortland CC ("TC3") Panthers to win the Region 3A Championship and a berth in the national championship series in Minnesota.

The regional championship series was to have been played at TC3, on natural grass; however, the threat of substantial rain led to a change of venue. Cornell University graciously allowed play to be moved to their softball stadium, which features artificial turf on the entire playing surface except the pitching circle.

Game One

Game One began in sunny, 67-degree weather. However, as the game progressed, radar showed rain approaching the area. Fortunately, the rain did not arrive during the game.

Toni Secreti was in the circle for Herkimer. She showed once again that she is the premier pitcher in Region 3. She shut out TC3, allowing five hits and preventing the Panthers from creating any serious scoring threats. Herkimer's offense and defense were also stellar.

The Generals jumped on TC3's pitcher, Seneca Baldwin, for five runs in the first inning. Jessica Patterelli singled, Delaney Buckley doubled, two Generals walked, and right fielder Rebekah Kitchen stroked a double. 5-0 Herkimer.

Secreti silenced the Panthers in the second and third innings. Herkimer added a run in their half of the third when Ashley Sterritt and Alyssa Balfe singled and Kitchen hit a sacrifice fly. 6-0 Herkimer.

It was three up and three down for the Panthers in the fourth. Herkimer needed an eight-run lead in order to shorten the game by the run rule. They got that lead. Steph Siriano lashed a line-drive single. Buckley walked. Sterritt singled to left, scoring Siriano and Buckley. 8-0 Herkimer.

Secreti saw to it that the fifth frame was the final one for TC3. She allowed a single, and then got a ground out and a strikeout. She walked one batter, then induced a popup that shortstop Tina Karaqi squeezed into her glove for the final out.

The Generals won the game and were one win away from a trip to Minnesota.

TC3 0 0 0 0 0 0-5-1

Herkimer 5 0 1 2 x 8-10-0

2B- Herkimer Buckley, Kitchen

Pitching, Herkimer- Secreti- 1 BB, 5 SO, faced 21 batters and pitched 17 first-pitch strikes

Game Two

The second contest was scheduled for 2:00 p.m. A light rain fell between Herkimer's games, but it eased up and almost stopped by the time Game Two began. Herkimer had been the home team in the first game but was the visiting team in Game Two.

Head Coach PJ Anadio made just a few personnel changes for Game Two. Jess Patterelli was in the circle. Samantha Smaldone moved to second base. Delaney Buckley took over at first base, and Alyssa Balfe put on the catching gear. Seneca Baldwin again had the pitching duties for TC3.

The Generals got on the board right away. Sammy Smaldone doubled to right field, and then Steph Siriano sent one over the center field fence to make it 2-0 Herkimer in the first inning. It was Siriano's 12th round-tripper of the season.

Herkimer added two more in the second inning. Sterritt and Balfe walked, and Patterelli lashed a double to center field, plating her two teammates. 4-0 Herkimer.

TC3 scored a run in their half of the second on an error and two singles.

Neither team threatened in the third. Then the Generals' offense launched a massive barrage in the fourth.

Six Generals crossed the plate in the top of the fourth, and it all began with two out and no runners on base. Rebekah Kitchen was hit by a pitch. Courtney Gumprecht walked. Pitcher Patterelli powered a single to short, scoring Kitchen. Sammy Smaldone hit one out of the park, clearing the bases. Siriano fouled off three pitches and walked. Buckley singled to left. Karaqi walked. Then Sterritt doubled to right. Herkimer led 10-1.

Herkimer's Kitchen stayed hot at the plate, lining a triple into center field to open the fifth and final inning. Patterelli was hit by a pitch, and Sammy Smaldone stepped up to the plate. Smaldone put one of her sweet swings on the pitch and sent it over the left field fence – her second dinger of the day and 12th of the campaign. 13-1 Herkimer.

The Panthers got on the board in the home half of the final inning. TC3's Taylor Policay hit a two-run home run to right. The final score was 13-3.

The win gave the Generals the regional crown and their second consecutive trip to the national final-eight tournament, the Division III Junior College World Series. It will be played in Rochester, Minnesota on May 16-18.

The Generals have an amazing 39-2 season record. Now they will have the opportunity to play for the national championship.

All-Tournament Team
TC3- Taylor Policay, Katie Huston
Herkimer- Ashley Sterritt, Jess Patterelli
Tournament MVP- Sammy Smaldone

Nick Scribe, website writer – with special thanks to Olivia Danosky and the others who provided live game information

Game Two stats:
Herkimer 2 2 0 6 3 13-10-1
TC3 0 1 0 0 2 3-6--0
2B- Herkimer Patterelli, Smaldone, Sterritt
3B- Herkimer Kitchen
HR- Herkimer Smaldone (2), Siriano; TC3 Policay
Pitching- Herkimer Patterelli- 1 BB, 5 SO, faced 24 batters and pitched 16 first-pitch strikes

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