UNIVERSITY PARK — Springfield Delco’s “Sister Act” has landed a PIAA title.
The Lady Cougars, who have five sisters in its infield, got big games from Courtney and Lauren Scarpato as they knocked off Bethlehem Catholic 3-0 in the Class AAA title game at Nittany Lion Softball Park.
Courtney Scarpato tossed a five-hitter and Lauren Scarpato delivered a two-run double in a three-run third inning as Springfield (21-6) won the first PIAA crown in school history.
“We’ve dreamt of it since we were little, getting to play with each other,” said Lauren Scarpato, a senior third baseman, whose sister Ashley, a freshman, plays first base. “Here we are winning a state championship. You couldn’t ask for anything more.”
The Lady Cougars also start sisters Tori and Nikki DePietro at shortstop and second base, respectively.
“They get along great,” Springfield coach Todd Odgers said of the sisters. “They’re funny and they all have their own personalities. They’re fun and it’s a fun group from top to bottom.”
Courtney Scarpato was dominant even though she did not strike out a batter. She induced 15 groundball outs and did not walk a batter.
“Usually it’s a lot more mixed with high pops and groundballs,” Courtney Scarpato said. “Today, I was using my drop and they grounded out a lot. That’s what worked today.”
She took care of six of those herself.
“They’re smart,” Bethlehem Catholic coach Rich Mazza said. “They play their shortstop over quite a bit to the left because their pitcher is a heck of an infielder. She’s like an extra infielder there.”
“My natural position is middle infield,” Courtney Scarpato said. “I just pitch for school. It comes easy for me and it helps a lot to be able to field my position.”
Springfield broke through in the third against Bethlehem Catholic’s Elyse Cuttic. Courtney Scarpato and Taylor Winkleman led off the inning with singles and Scarpato scored as Tori DePietro reached on an error.
That brought up Lauren Scarpato, who fell behind in the count before clubbing a two-run double well over the shallow-playing Lady Hawks outfield.
“My timing was entirely off,” Lauren Scarpato said. “At that point, I just said, ‘Grip it and rip it.’ I swung and that’s what happened.”
Bethlehem Catholic could do nothing with the Courtney Scarpato from there.
Both teams finished with five hits and an error in the contest, which was played in just one hour, 20 minutes.
Bethlehem Catholic finished 22-5,
“We didn’t expect to be here,” Mazza said. “I thought last year we should have been here. We kept plugging away.”
Springfield, a District 1 runner-up, didn’t plan on gold, either.
“It doesn’t even feel real right now,” Courtney Scarpato said. “I’m so excited that we won. Springfield has never won a state championship in any sport and it’s exciting to be the first team to do that.”
Follow Walt Moody on Twitter@wmoodycdt