LITTLE LEAGUE Canfield girls qualify for state tournament
Lauren Sulick pitched Canfield to an 8-1 win over Boardman for the District 2 championship.
By MARK W. MILLER
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
CANFIELD -- It's on to Dayton to the state Little League softball tournament for the Canfield 11-12-year-old District 2 championship team.
Tuesday at McCune Park topped Boardman 8-1 for the district crown.
Lauren Sulick pitched a three-hitter and struck out eight batters to pick up the win for Canfield (5-0 in tournament competition).
"Sulick has pitched big games for us over the years," Canfield manager Chris Cole said. "She helped us win the 10-year-old state title. She has a lot of composure."
Sulick got into a slight jam in the fourth inning. But with two on and one away, Sulick struck out the next two batters to end the threat.
In the fifth inning, Boardman scored a run on a single by Shannon Marrow, who advanced to second on a passed ball and to third on a wild pitch. Katie Hawkins walked to put runners on the corners.
After a strikeout, Marrow scored on a single and Hawkins moved to third. Sulick got Samantha Peters to fly out and she struck out Courtney Schiffauer.
Canfield got all the runs it needed in the first inning. Jill Halfhill singled, stole second and moved to third on an error. With one away, Tricia Bettura singled home Halfhill. Bettura later scored on a ground-out.
"We had a couple of clutch hits in the first inning giving us a 2-0 lead and that was big," Cole said.
In the second inning, Canfield's Brittany Danilov singled and scored after three wild pitches.
Bettura, leading off the third for Canfield, tripled and scored on a ground-out.
Singles by Bryanne Halfhill, Melissa West, Nikki Bonamase and Courtney Rothbauer along with three stolen bases, two errors, a fielder's choice and two wild pitches gave Canfield four runs in the fifth.
"The girls played a complete game today," Cole said. "They were able to get bunts down and make key hits.
"We have been together four years and this team is fundamentally sound offensively and defensively," Cole said. "They know how to play this game."
Canfield had 10 hits, at least one hit every inning, with Bettura getting on base three times. In addition to her triple, Bettura singled and reached base on an error. All three times she scored.
Rothbauer had three hits.