BROOKVILLE — With her team trailing 1-0 in the sixth inning, it was Kate Zameroski’s turn to do something big off the bench for the DuBois Lady Beavers softball team.
Zameroski came up big with a one-out, pinch-hit triple just under the glove of Brookville leftfielder Leah Kammerdeiner, pushing home teammates Kacie Means and Danessa Allison.
DuBois added an insurance run in the seventh and beat Brookville, 3-1, at McKinley Field Wednesday afternoon.
The 10-9 Lady Beavers finish the regular season Friday in the City Classic against DuBois Central Catholic at Way Memorial Field at City Park.
From there, it’s off to the District 6-9-10 Class 5A sub-regional playoffs. DuBois hosts Hollidaysburg Monday with the winner meeting Central Mountain at Penn State University May 24. That winner takes on the District 10 champion after that.
So there was nothing at all wrong with how Lady Beavers head coach Rick McClelland
“We’re just trying to build momentum for the playoffs and I was happy to see how they stuck with it and kept going today,” McClelland said.
Sticking with it for sure. The Lady Beavers had trouble with their timing against Brookville starter Abby Sunealitis, fouling off a ton of pitches to the left side. They left runners in scoring position in four of the first five innings and four of their seven hits went for extra bases.
But, no runs until Zameroski.
“I wasn’t frustrated but the girls probably were,” McClelland said. “They knew they were out on their front foot. It’s tough to stay back and let your hands do the work. They just kept at it and that’s the important thing with something like that. This is a dumb game. You can do something right and hit a line drive right at someone and it doesn’t count for anything.
“They’re just battling and battling. You get a bunch of foul balls when you have kids trying to make it happen. You don’t change anything, just go at it and hopefully the pitcher will make a mistake and give you something to get into.”
With one out in the top of the sixth, Means and Allison singled to set up Zameroski’s heroics.
She lined a pitch into left field where Kammerdeiner charged to make the play, but the ball went under her glove. Zameroski wound up at third and the Lady Beavers were up for good.
“That’s a senior who made something happen when it was time,” McClelland said. “She did a great job. She got a pitch to drive and did a great job getting those runs across the plate. That’s an absolutely huge at-bat for us.”
The Lady Beavers wound up stranding two more runners in scoring position in the sixth, but added a run in the seventh. Laura Fatula led off with a single and came around to score on a wild pitch with one out.
That was enough for DuBois starter Molly Nosker, who tossed a four-hitter at the Lady Raiders. She struck out four and walked one while hitting a batter.
Brookville’s lone run came in the third when Marcy Schindler led off with a walk and came around to score on Hannah Kirkwood’s triple to deep right-center field. But Kirkwood was stranded there.
That was about it for the Lady Raiders, who were stifled a little by some good DuBois defense. Centerfielder Marissa Torretti took away a potential extra-base hit by Carlie McManigle to lead off the fourth and second baseman Maddie Smith made a nice turn on a double play and backhand stab for all three outs in the sixth inning.
“Molly did a good job working on top of most of the hitters and her pitches were working well today. She always gives you maximum effort and it was one of those again today,” McClelland said. “The (sixth) was a great defensive inning. Maddie ended it with a nice backhand and it was nice to see a double play at a time like that.”
The loss dropped the Lady Raiders to 8-11 going into the Class AA playoffs that begin next week. It’s their first trip to the postseason since 2010 and the eight wins is already the most since their last winning season of 12-8 in 2007.
Still, Lady Raiders coach Carl McManigle liked a lot of what he saw in the loss.
“I told the team that this was the team that played well during our great stretch and this is the one I want to see going into the playoffs, whether it’s one game or whatever. This is the team that can compete,” McManigle said.
Sunealitis, filling in for injured regular starter Carlie McManigle who played second base, pitched admirably, allowing the seven hits while walking four. The Lady Raiders committed just one error behind her.
It just came down to not enough offense to support a gutsy Sunealitis outing.
“There weren’t enough hits at the right time and there was a ball that found a hole and that’s what it was,” McManigle said. “I cannot ask more from what Abby gave us tonight. She did a fantastic job against a quality team and held them most of the game.”
Sarah Snyder doubled twice for the Lady Beavers while Allison tripled with one out and was stranded at third in the second inning.
Kirkwood had two hits for the Lady Raiders, her first hit an infield single to start the bottom of the first inning.