The Laurel Major League all-star softball team went 4-0 in Delaware District III play, defeating Lower Sussex, 11-2, in the championship game to move on to state tournament play.
We’ve got a team full of heart. All of these girls are great,” said Laurel manager James Shockley. “They all worked hard. They put it all on the line and the score showed that.”
Lower Sussex threatened in the first inning of last Wednesday’s championship game in Georgetown when singles by Sophie Scurci and Maci Blades and a hit batter loaded the bases, but Laurel pitcher Paitlyn Blake induced two popups and struck out a batter to strand the runners.
Laurel jumped out to a 5-0 lead with five runs in the top of the second inning. Ashlyn Ullman singled and went to second on an error, Keirsten Passwaters singled, and Taylor Lowe hit an RBI single. Karly Deihm reached first on an error to load the bases, Blake hit a two-out single and went to second on an error, and Bailey Ullman doubled to drive in a pair before being thrown out at third base.
Lower Sussex’s Gracie Hoban hit a leadoff single in the bottom of the second and moved to second on a sac bunt before being left on base. Lower Sussex scored two runs on two hits, a wild pitch, and an error in the third to make the score 5-2.
Laurel added a pair of runs in the top of the fifth as Shea Cooper singled in Bailey Ullman (walk) and Lowe singled to score Ashlyn Ullman (intentional walk). In the sixth inning, Blake singled, moved to second on a wild pitch, and scored on a double by Bailey Ullman; Ullman moved to third on a single by Baylee Lynch and scored on a sac fly by Passwaters; Cooper singled in Lynch; and Lowe reached on an error to drive in a run to make the score 11-2.
Blake sent Lower Sussex down in order in the bottom of the sixth to seal the win. “When she gets into the zone she turns into a human cannon,” Shockley said of Blake. Lowe collected three hits to help lead the Laurel offense.
Laurel competes in the state tournament this week in Smyrna. “We just need to continue to believe, continue to play with Laurel pride,” said Shockley.