EHS softball team qualifies for tourney

It was an up and down week for the Everett High softball team that saw Coach Stacey Poste’s squad end on a high note with a 15-0 shellacking of Arlington on Saturday to avenge an earlier 2-0 loss to their former GBL rival.

The Lady Crimson Tide’s rollercoaster week began in the rain last Tuesday evening against Malden in a contest with a share of the GBL title at stake.

“This game never should have been played at 6:45 and should have been moved to 4:00, knowing it was going to rain later in the evening,” said Poste. “The rain was coming down at its hardest at the beginning and our pitcher, Michelle Zullo, had to slow down her speed to have control of the ball. Malden of course hit her while our players made mistakes because the ball was now soaked from being on the grass.”

After Malden jumped out to a 2-0 lead with solo markers in the first and third frames, Everett freshman Janyne Sierra belted a home run in the third to slice the margin to 2-1. Malden made it 4-1 with two more scores in the fourth and then added seven in the fifth before the umpire finally halted play for safety reasons.

The teams then resumed the game on Saturday, prior to Everett’s scheduled game with Arlington, due to a quirk in the GBL rules that provides for suspended games to be resumed from where they left off, as opposed to the national softball federation rule that states that such games are to start over.

Malden quickly added to its lead on Saturday and the game then was called because of the slaughter rule.

So after that disheartening defeat, Poste’s crew had to take on an Arlington team that had blanked the Lady Crimson Tide 2-0 earlier in the season.

“I had some misgivings about playing Arlington right after the Malden loss because the girls might be down,” said Poste. “But they proved me wrong. They did just the opposite. They wanted to beat Arlington badly because we had lost to them earlier and that’s exactly what they did.”

Indeed, the visitors from Arlington ran into a Lady Crimson Tide team bent on revenge, and the outcome was a 15-0 shelling that saw the Everett girls unleash their frustrations in a big way.

Everett grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Kristie Welch singled, moved to second on a fielder’s choice, stole third, and score on a sacrifice fly to centerfield.

The Lady Crimson Tide began to open things up in the second inning. Amanda Ray started the rally in big fashion by swatting a home run. Sierra, Erin McLaughlin, and Taylor Sweeney all singled, loading the bases. After Sierra scored on an infield hit by Alea Martinelli, Tory Cyrus delivered McLaughlin and Sweeney with a base hit. Martinelli came home on another RBI hit by Samantha Rebelo and then Cyrus and Rebelo scored on Rachel Pierce’s hit into the outfield.

By the time the smoke had cleared, Everett was on top by an 8-0 margin.

The Lady Crimson Tide tacked on four more runs in the third inning that began when. McLaughlin and Sweeney unloaded back to back roundtrippers. Martinelli slapped a hit into the outfield and after Cyrus reached base, Pierce sent both teammates home with a double. With the score now at 12-0 and Zullo cruising on the mound, Poste was able to give all of her team a chance to see some action.

Zullo stifled the Arlington bats to record her second no hitter of the season, fanning eight and walking only three.

Earlier in the week on Thursday, Michelle Z. was in top form again in a 4-1 win over Medford. Michelle went the entire seven inning route, allowing just two hits and walking only one, while whiffing seven Lady Mustangs.

The Lady Crimson Tide gave Zullo all the runs she would need with two markers in the second. After Sierra doubled, McLaughlin walked and Sierra moved to third on a fielder’s choice. A passed ball allowed Sierra to scoot home and Erin to get to third. Sweeney then laid down a nice sacrifice bunt to score McLaughlin for a 2-0 Everett advantage.

Medford got one back in the third, but Everett responded in the bottom of the inning. Pierce singled and Cristina Faia came in as her courtesy runner. After Faia moved to second on a ground out and then to third on a passed ball, she scored on an error when the Medford third baseman made a bad throw to first.

The Lady Crimson Tide added a double insurance run in the fourth thanks to an error on a grounder by Sweeney, bases on balls to Welch and Martinelli, and, with the bases now loaded, a hit batter (Cyrus) that forced in Sweeney.

“This win was huge for us,” said Poste, who noted that it secured second place in the GBL and, being their 10th win, earned her team a spot in the state tournament. “Michelle pitched a great game and the defense helped her in the field.”

On Friday the Lady Crimson Tide suffered a 5-2 setback to Lynn Classical in a non league encountert. Stephanie Chaves pitched well, yielding just seven hits and four runs in five innings of work, with Zullo coming on in the final two frames to pitch shutout softball.

Classical scored two runs in the second inning, but Everett got those back when Pierce singled, Ray walked, and McLaughlin tripled.

However, Classical scored three in the third and made the 5-2 lead stand up the rest of the way thanks to a lack of timely hitting by the Lady Crimson Tide, who stranded numerous teammates on base.

“This was a disappointing game,” said Poste. “We left so many runners on base and we could not produce hits to score runs. We lost to this team 12-0 last time and we knew they were beatable, yet we could not get it done.”

Poste and her crew, who now stand at 11-7 on the year, were set to close out their regular yesterday (Tuesday) against Lynn English and at Revere tomorrow (Thursday) and then will await the announcement of the state tourney seedings and pairings.

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