Bellefonte scored three runs and went through its entire batting order in the third inning to help put away Somerset 6-1 Wednesday afternoon and advance to the District 6 Class AAA Championship.
The Lady Red Raiders (11-8) will face Bellwood-Antis on May 27 at Penn State’s Nittany Lion Softball Park in the title game. The Blue Devils beat Hollidaysburg 10-1.
Somerset trailed 1-0 going into the the third. The Golden Eagles’ freshman pitcher, Allison Lane, gave up a single to the Lady Raiders’ Angela Capparelle. Somerset then committed two fielding errors to load the bases. Sarah Menna hit an RBI single and Alexis Wetzler followed with a two-run double to put Bellefonte up 4-0.
The Golden Eagles scored their lone run in the bottom of the third. Somerset left fielder Cassandra Sanzi hit a single, stole two bases and scored when senior Bailey Stinebiser grounded out.
“Our girls battled a tough Bellefonte team today,” Somerset coach Craig Stinebiser said. “We played a good game but had a bad inning and came up short.”
Somerset’s Sanzi, Lane, Taylor McCall and Emily Costea had its only hits. Tara Baney earned the win, pitching a complete game with four strikeouts. She walked two.
The Golden Eagles also had five errors to Bellefonte’s one.
The Lady Raiders’ leadoff batter, Jenna Ault, singled in the top of the fourth. Capparelle advanced Ault to third with a double. Baney singled to knock both of them in for the final runs of the game.
“I think we made the most of our opportunities,” Bellefonte coach Fred Caldwell said. “We played well defensively. It was probably one the best defensive games we had.”
Capparelle went 2-for-4 and scored two runs.
Somerset finished the season 12-7 on a team with three freshmen and four sophomores in the starting lineup. Stinebiser believes this was great experience for his young team.
“We came a long way this year,” Stinebiser said. “We’ve got a good, solid program, and I’m looking forward to the next few years.
“I think we’ve got some really good seasons on the horizon,” Stinebiser said.
Caldwell felt the same way about the Golden Eagles.
“I mentioned to their coach that their future looks bright for them,” Caldwell said. “They’re very young with some good players.”
The Lady red Raiders will now turn their attention to Bellwood-Antis.
“I know several of the Bellwood-Antis players and I’ve kind of watched them,” Caldwell said. “After the way we played today, if we just clean up some mistakes and hit the way we are capable, I think we will be fine.”