Koldys, Murphy Pitch Pittsfield Past Hoosac
ADAMS, Mass. -- The Pittsfield High softball team made the most of all its opportunities and never gave host Hoosac Valley much of a chance at all on Wednesday at Russell Field.
The Generals scratched out 11 hits and plated six unearned runs on the way to an 11-1 victory in the Hurricanes' season opener.
"I thought we did a good job of attacking a very good pitcher," PHS coach Greg Marchbanks said, referring to Hoosac sophomore Kali Puppolo. "She's not used to people making contact on her, and I think we did a good job of that. We made her have to really move the ball and make us chase it. We did a good job of staying patient.
"And on the basepaths, we stayed aggressive, and that paid off for us."
Pittsfield (2-0) stole four bases and took advantage of every passed ball/wild pitch that presented itself.
At the plate, Haley Tobin led the hit parade with a 4-for-4 performance, but Allie Hunt delivered the biggest blow, a home run to left field in the top of the fifth that -- fortunately for Hoosac -- came with nobody on base.
Overall, new Hoosac coach Mike Ameen was happy with the way Puppolo held up against the 2014 Western Mass Division 1 quarterfinalists.
"I know they scored runs, but they didn't really hit the ball all that well," Ameen said. "They hit ground balls and we made some errors. Without those errors, it's a 2-1 ballgame, 3-1 ballgame. That's what I told them.
"I think Allie's home run in the fifth inning was the first solid hit."
As for the miscues that contributed to the final margin, Ameen said that the Hurricanes are a work in progress, but he is seeing progress.
"I had two or three young kids playing in positions that they hadn't even played yet," he said. "We were a little tentative today because we're young and inexperienced and the first game and all that.
"I've got eight sophomores on this team, and seven of them are starters. They're very enthusiastic and energetic, and I'm actually very pleased with the attitude."
Pittsfield scored in each of the first four innings, doing most of its damage with five unearned runs in the fifth.
Back in the first, Hunt scored the game's first run with a walk, a stolen base, a passed ball and a wild pitch. In the second, Julia Murphy had a two-RBI single to make it 3-0.
While technically those second-inning runs were earned, the rally was helped when a bunt single went for two bases because of uncertainty among the Hoosac infielders about which base to cover.
A Tobin double led to a lone run in the third to make it 4-0.
But the wheels really came off for Hoosac in the fifth, when Pittsfield scored five runs on just two hits, one an infield single by Tobin.
The 'Canes got one back in the bottom of the inning when Carrington McGrath drove in Haley Adelt with a single to left.
And Puppolo left the circle to start the fifth inning, giving way to junior Erin Girard. She struck out four and allowed two runs - one earned - in three innings of relief.
Pittsfield starter Emily Koldys also got some relief after allowing one run on four hits with four Ks through five innings. Julia Murphy moved in from center field to take over in the circle, and she picked up four strikeouts against one hit the rest of the way.
"To have two pitchers at the caliber both these pitchers are is a godsend," Marchbanks said. "We're going to have Julia pitch tomorrow, and Emily can back her up.
"Either way we go, they're two different styles, and they're both effective."